(SD)-Guilty Verdict In Pine Ridge Reservation Killing
RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - A federal court jury in Rapid City found a man guilty Friday for the shooting death last July of 13-year-old Te'Ca Clifford on the Pine Ridge reservation.
27-year-old James Robert Dowty of Pine Ridge faces up to life in prison when he's sentenced for 2nd-degree murder and a weapons charge. No sentencing date has been set.
Clifford and 3 other teenage girls were walking home along Highway 18 after buying alcohol at what was described as a bootlegger's home when she was killed. The other girls, one of them Dowty's cousin, testified that he'd shot Clifford after one of them had thrown a rock at him.
Assistant U-S Attorney Eric Kelderman said after the verdict prosecutors were happy with the guilty verdicts and that justice has been served.
Kelderman praised the other girls as "tremendous teenagers who ...did a great job of telling what happened to their friend. Their community should be proud of them, they should be very proud of themselves and we are happy that the jury reached a verdict and believed them."
The case went to the jury on Thursday after 2-1/2 days of testimony and the jury returned the verdict on Friday.
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