The Nation

Jan 24, 2011 7:23 PM by Greg Boyce

Man sentenced in 1975 death of Indian activist

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - A South Dakota judge has handed down a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole for the man convicted in the 1975 death of an American Indian Movement activist.

Last month, John Graham was convicted of felony murder for participating in a kidnapping that led to Annie Mae Aquash's death. State Attorney General Marty Jackley says the law in effect at the time stipulates a sentence of life without parole.

Graham appeared before Judge John Delaney on Monday for the sentencing. Witnesses testified at trial that they saw Graham and two other activists take Aquash from Denver to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, where she was found dead. Authorities believe AIM leaders told Graham and two other activists to kill Aquash because they thought she was a government spy.

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