Victims to speak in court in Chasing Horse sexual abuse case

NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev. (AP) — Victims, police detectives and federal agents are expected to speak in court Monday before a judge decides whether to grant bail to a former ‘Dances with Wolves’ actor accused of sexually abusing Indigenous girls and of leading a cult over a period spanning two decades.

Nathan Chasing Horse, 46, is accused of sex trafficking, sexual assault and child abuse following his arrest on Tuesday near the North Las Vegas home he shares with his wives. He has not been formally charged in the case.

He appeared briefly in court Thursday in North Las Vegas for the first time but did not speak as his public defenders pleaded his right to a detention hearing on his behalf, citing Nevada case law requiring prosecutors to present convincing evidence as to why a defendant should remain in custody.

Clark County Chief Deputy District Attorney Jessica Walsh told the judge on Thursday that she expected Las Vegas police detectives, FBI special agents and victims to speak at Monday’s hearing.

North Las Vegas Justice of the Peace Natalie Tyrrell was also able to hear from relatives of Chasing Horse, who attended her first court hearing last week and filled an entire line in the courthouse gallery in support.

Known for his role as young Sioux tribesman Smiles a Lot in Kevin Costner’s Academy Award-winning film, Chasing Horse built a reputation among tribes across the United States and Canada as a “medicine man” who performed ceremonies of healing. He was born on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota, home to the Sicangu Sioux, one of the seven tribes of the Lakota nation.

In a 50-page search warrant obtained by the Associated Press, police described Chasing Horse as the leader of a cult known as The Circle, whose followers believed he could communicate with higher powers.

Police said he abused his position, physically and sexually assaulted indigenous girls and took underage wives for more than two decades.

According to the warrant, Chasing Horse trained his wives to use firearms and instructed them to “shoot” with police officers if they tried to “destroy their family.” If that failed, or if he was ever arrested or died unexpectedly, he told his wives to take “suicide pills,” the document said.

SWAT officers and investigators arrested Chasing Horse last week and cleared out the family home without incident.

Detectives who searched the property found handguns, 41 pounds (18.5 kilograms) of marijuana and psilocybin mushrooms, and a memory card with multiple videos of sexual assaults, according to an arrest report released Wednesday.

Additional charges could be filed in connection with the videos, the report said.

Las Vegas Police said in the search warrant that at least six victims had been identified, including one who was 13 when she claims she was abused and another who says she was given to him as a “gift” when he was 15 years.

Police said the crimes date back to the early 2000s and span multiple states, including South Dakota, Montana and Nevada, where he lived for about a decade.

His arrest came nearly a decade after he was banned from the Fort Peck Reservation in Poplar, Montana amid similar allegations.

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