Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

October 29, 2022

Standing Rock: Six Years Later -- Militarized Police, Cover-ups and the Fight for Justice

Militarized police attack Water Protectors in prayer, Oct. 27, 2016
Images from video by Unicorn Riot

"Today we stood strong against this Nazi oil-bought police force. They set off LRAD on us, hit us, maced us, arrested our grandmothers, and uncles, shot at our horse relatives, and set off concussion grenades, and rubber bullets into the unarmed crowd. They desecrated sacred land and destroyed our homes on tribal land. We had snipers scoping me out with an assault rifle pointed at me and my relative. Our hearts were wounded but we will regroup and keep our minds in high vibrations because it is not over.
We will stop the pipeline." Cepoalli, shared on Censored News, as it happened, Oct. 27, 2016

TigerSwan mercenaries hired by the pipeline stalked Palestinian supporters at Standing Rock. The Intercept exposed TigerSwan's internal documents. A Palestinian-American activist singled out in the reports was shocked to hear his name mentioned in that context. “As indigenous people, Palestinians stand in solidarity with other indigenous people and their right to land, water, and sovereignty,” he told The Intercept. “To insinuate that our assumed faith is a red flag for terrorist tactics is another example of willful ignorance and the establishment’s continued attempts to criminalize nonviolent protest and justify violence against it.”

Taser attack which violently knocked Water Protector to the ground. A barbed hook was lodged in his face.

Casey Camp Horinek, Ponca elder, arrested in ceremony. Casey testified before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, in Jamaica. "They zip-tied us. They put us on the ground, hauled us in buses to the basement of the Morton County Jail, and imprisoned us in dog cages after they wrote numbers on our arms like the Jews going to gas chambers."
We were kept in dog cages on the bare cement floor."

Sheriff's deputies were militarized. Deputies were brought in by the head of the National Sheriffs Association who lobbied Congress for militarized equipment. He stood to gain at the end of the Dakota Access Pipeline, on the Louisiana coast, by way of the Bayou Bridge pipeline, as reported by DeSmog Blog.

Medics treating victims were beaten and arrested. One medic describes a medic being beaten with a baton, another dragged out and arrested while the vehicle was moving. He describes a police officer with a silencer on an assault weapon. This post was viewed three-quarters of a million times at Censored News.
Watch the medic on YouTube describe the attack on medics, who were clearly identified with the Red Cross symbol.


Sprayed in the face at close range, a law enforcement violation.

Standing Rock: Six Years Later -- Militarized Police, Cover-ups and the Fight for Justice

By Brenda Norrell

Censored News

"They zip-tied us. They put us on the ground, hauled us in buses to the basement of the Morton County Jail, and imprisoned us in dog cages after they wrote numbers on our arms like the Jews going to gas chambers."

"We were kept in dog cages on the bare cement floor." Those are the words of Casey Camp Horinek, Ponca Councilwoman, who was in ceremony when dragged out and arrested. These are here words before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Jamaica.

The day of the attack by militarized police was Oct. 27, 2016.

Obama refused to stop the police violence

Before the brutal attack on Standing Rock Water Protectors on Oct. 27, 2016, Cheyenne River Lakota Chairman Harold Frazier met with Obama in Los Angeles, and urged Obama to take action before it was too late.

Obama did not respond with help and instead went to a golf game and an expensive dinner fundraiser. It is one of our most censored news articles. Another censored news fact: Before Obama visited Standing Rock in June of 2014, the permits for the Dakota Access Pipeline were already approved in the spring of 2014, according to federal internal documents.

Two years later, the protection of the water began, and the militarized police fired rubber bullets, tear gas, pepper spray, and bean bags at close range at Water Protectors, resulting in critical injuries.

During the attacks by militarized police in 2016, women were strip-searched, and elderly Native women were locked in wire cages in a jail basement with numbers written on their arms as was done by the Nazis. Native elders were denied their medicines.

Obama gave false hope in press statements that Dakota Access Pipeline would be stopped. While Water Protectors were being brutalized the last week of October 2016, Obama responded to a question from the press and said, "We're going to let it play out for a few more weeks." 

The abuse was accelerated by the media, including Billings media, which bolstered the comments of the Morton County Sheriff.

The Intercept: TigerSwan and FBI operative exposed

The role of TigerSwan mercenaries, and FBI undercover operative Heath Harmon, a tribal member of Three Affiliated Tribes in North Dakota, were later exposed by The Intercept media. It was Harmon's pistol, which he left in his coat pocket, that resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of Red Fawn.

Reporter Allen Brown exposed most of the facts known so far about TigerSwan and Harmon. 

Instead of winning awards for investigative journalism, Brown was recently laid off by The Intercept. Brown's layoff happened as The Intercept was in court seeking the release of TigerSwan's documents at Standing Rock.

The pipeline owners sued TigerSwan in an attempt to halt the release of the documents, but that did not happen. The court said these are public documents and those are now due to be released.

Morton County said in 2016 that TigerSwan was directing law enforcement at Standing Rock. North Dakota's regulatory board ruled that TigerSwan operated without a license in the state, and the court ordered the documents to be released.

The North Dakota Supreme Court ruled on Thursday, April 28, 2022, and ordered documents connected to a partnership between the Dakota Access Pipeline operators and TigerSwan are public record, Inforum reports.

Paiute Shoshone Myron Dewey documented pipeline security and was killed on an isolated road, the day after live-streaming from the Fallon bombing range in Nevada

(Above) Myron Dewey shared this photo at Standing Rock on Nov. 3, 2016, with these words, "SNIPERS posted above the peaceful water protectors in many different locations on the sacred sites."

Myron Dewey, Paiute Shoshone journalist, and drone activist documented TigerSwan and the pipeline's other hired security at Standing Rock. Myron's photos, and drone videos, documented the faces of the hired and covert security, along with a tower that he said was interfering with cellphone use in camp. Myron documented pipeline construction, and flights over the camps of Oceti Sakowin, Red Warrior, Sacred Stone, and Rosebud.

Myron was killed when a truck pulled into his lane on an isolated dirt road near his family's home in Yomba, Nevada. The driver's blood test results were concealed by law enforcement for nine months. Now, after the relentless efforts of his daughter Taylor Dewey, seeking justice for her father, the driver is charged and facing arraignment in November.

Myron's testimony and evidence could have been subpoenaed in the ongoing lawsuits resulting from excessive force by police and ongoing court cases due to critical injuries by law enforcement.

Two Dine' victims, both struck in their eyes, await justice in lawsuits

Vanessa Dundon, Dine', who was struck in the eye by a tear gas canister in November of 2016 filed suit naming Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier. In the ongoing lawsuit (Dundon vs. Kirchmeier) Dundon states that law enforcement used excessive force at Backwater Bridge when they blasted Water Protectors with water canons in freezing temperatures and fired tear gas and canisters.

In another ongoing lawsuit, an appeals court revived part of the excessive force lawsuit brought by Marcus Mitchell, Dine'. Mitchell was shot in the eye by an officer's bean bag shotgun blast at Standing Rock.

Federal appeals judges have revived part of the lawsuit filed by Mitchell. The young Navajo man said law enforcement officers seriously injured him and violated his civil rights during protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Ladonna's words on October 27, 2016

Ladonna Bravebull Allard offered her land at Standing Rock for use as the base camp, Sacred Stone Camp, in 2016.

After the militarized attack on Oct. 27, 2016, Ladonna said, "My people stand for the water, and they attack us. My people stand up for the graves of our people, and they attack us. My people stand up for our sacred places, and they attack us. My people pray, and they stop us, dragging us from our prayer, and throw us in the dirt. I know this is America -- this is the history of my people. America has always walked through the blood of my people."

"How can we stand in the face of violence? Because I was born to this land, because the roots grow out of my feet, because I love this land and I honor the water. Have we not learned from history? I pray for each of the people who stand up. We can not live like this anymore. It has to stop -- my grandchildren have a right to live. The world has a right to live. The water, the lifeblood of the world? has a right to live. Mni Wiconi, Water of Life. Pray for the water, pray for the people. Stop Dakota Access -- killer of the world," said Bravebull, who has made her journey to the Spirit World.

Eryn Wise of the International Indigenous Youth Council said on that day in 2016, “Today more than half of our youth council were attacked, injured or arrested."

"In addition to our brothers and sisters being hurt and incarcerated, we saw police steal our sacred staff. I have no words for what happened to any of us today. They are trying to again rewrite our narrative and we simply will not allow it. Our youth are watching and remembering the faces of the officers that assaulted them. They pray for them," Wise said.

Casey Camp Horinek's testimony to Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

By Brenda Norrell in Jamaica

Testifying before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Casey Casey Horinek, Ponca Councilwoman, described how Water Protectors were brutalized in Standing Rock on Oct. 27, 2016.

"There were helicopters, planes, drones, armed personnel, with LRad sound canons, percussion grenades, pepper spray, hundreds of riot-geared personnel who descended on us and began to brutalize us."

"They knocked us to the ground, as we stood in prayer, hundreds of unarmed women, men, and children."

"They zip-tied us. They put us on the ground, hauled us in buses to the basement of the Morton County Jail, and imprisoned us in dog cages after they wrote numbers on our arms like the Jews going to gas chambers."

"We were kept in dog cages on the bare cement floor."

"That was my number. Number 138," she said, showing the number written with marker on her arm.

In all, 142 were arrested that day.

In contrast, a federal court in Denver in March awarded $14 million to protesters demanding justice after George Floyd's death. One police officer was ordered to pay directly $250,000 to a person injured by a pepper ball.

Article copyright Brenda Norrell, Censored News. Photos and videos are copyrighted by the creator of the work. No content may be used without written permission of the creator of the work.

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