Federal appeals court upholds Wyo. man’s conviction in daughter’s death

By Ben Neary, AP
Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Appeals court upholds Wyo. man’s conviction

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — A federal appeals court has ruled against a Northern Arapaho man who says the state of Wyoming lacked authority to prosecute him for murder in his daughter’s death.

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld the conviction of Andrew John Yellowbear Jr.

Yellowbear is serving a life sentence in state prison in the 2004 beating death of the 22-month-old girl.

The appeals court rejected Yellowbear’s claim that the girl was in an area of the small town of Riverton that is legally still part of the Wind River Indian Reservation. The Northern Arapaho Tribe supported Yellowbear’s argument.

A federal judge last year ruled against the tribe’s claim that land around Riverton remains part of the Indian reservation for taxation purposes.

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