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Police Report: Man pleads guilty in death of drinking buddy


A Shiprock man has pleaded guilty in federal district court to killing his drinking buddy after he the two got into an argument.

Simeon Atcitty, 38, is now facing sentencing in federal court in Albuquerque.

The crime carries a sentence of up to life in prison but under the plea agreement, the prosecution agreed to accept a nine-year sentence.

In his admission of guilt, Atcitty said he and his friend, identified as John Doe in the court records, were drinking at his home on June 19, 2020, when his friend said something that upset him.

Atcitty said they began arguing which led to him hitting and kicking his friend repeatedly in the head and chest until he fell to the ground. His friend was still moving so Atcitty said he continued to hit him until he stopped moving.

He said he then wrapped the body and called his ex-girlfriend and told her he had killed someone. Neither went to the police, who found the body a week later, leading to Atcitty’s arrest by FBI agents.

An autopsy found that Doe had died from extreme trauma to the chest. He was found to have an indentation in his chest as well as 10 rib fractures.

No date has been set for the formal sentencing. Atcitty remains in the custody of the U.S. Marshall’s Office.

Teec Nos Pos man pleads guilty to child sex abuse

LOS ANGELES — A Teec Nos Pos, Arizona, man last week signed a plea agreement admitting that he sexually abused a minor under the age of 16 in 2018.

Jeremiah Elijah Jim, 31, is waiting for formal sentencing in federal court in Albuquerque at some unspecified date.

The charges could have gotten him a life sentence but in the plea agreement, the prosecutor agreed to ask for a sentence between 14 and 24 years.

In his agreement, Jim admitted to having sexual relations with a boy under the age of 16 on June 3, 2019. He admitted that he forced the minor to have sex with him by threatening him with serious bodily harm if he failed to comply.

On or about the same date, he admitted to engaging the boy in another sexual act, again after threatening him with bodily harm if he failed to comply.

A press release from the U. S. Attorney’s Office in Albuquerque said a second man was also implicated and indicted for the same crime. That defendant was identified as Bryan Bull, no address or age given.

Bull is still awaiting a trial currently scheduled to be held on May 10 in Albuquerque.

Both Jim and Bull are currently being held in custody by the U. S. Marshall’s Office in Albuquerque.

Gallup man faces child porn charges

LOS ANGELES – A Gallup man is facing child pornography charges after an investigation by a national child abuse network.

Ervinson Yazzie, 32, has been charged with distribution of child pornography and possession of child pornography. He is being held in custody by the U.S. Marshall’s Office in Albuquerque.

According to court records, Yazzie was brought to the FBI’s attention by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The center had contacted the Crimes Against Children unit of the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office in October 2018 about Yazzie.

A video showing a child under the age of 12 engaging in a sexual act, according to the center, had been sent from Yazzie’s Facebook page to another person who is listed only as Witness 1 in the court records.
The office contacted Facebook and received details of Yazzie’s account.

The New Mexico investigation also found evidence that Yazzie had sent other videos containing child pornography to Witness 1.

The investigation continued through 2019 and 2020 and FBI agents learned that Yazzie and Witness 1 had talked about going to Albuquerque to pay for sex with underage minors. Witness 1 told agents the trip was made but they did not carry out plans to have sex with minors.

The investigation also revealed that more than 90 images of child pornography were also sent by Yazzie to Witness 1.

In December 2020, agents sat down with Yazzie to discuss what they found out during their investigation. Court records said that during the interview Yazzie admitting securing the images and the videos by going on the internet and then passing on some of this material to Witness 1.

He also admitted having child porn on another device and gave consent to FBI agents to search the machine. When the device was searched, court records said more images and videos were found of possible child pornography.

FBI seeks info about Tohatchi death

ALBUQUERQUE – The FBI is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying the circumstances surrounding the death of Watson Ben Watchman.

On Aug. 1, 2020, Watchman was found dead in his residence located 3.5 miles south of the Tohatchi Speedway store on Highway 491 in Tohatchi, New Mexico.

The cause of death was blunt head trauma.

Watchman was 43 years old at the time of his death.

The FBI and Navajo Nation Division of Public Safety are investigating.

Anyone with information is asked to call the FBI at 505-889-1300 or go online at tips.fbi.gov.

The FBI also is seeking information on other cases: https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices/albuquerque/wanted

About The Author

Bill Donovan

Bill Donovan wrote about Navajo Nation government and its people since 1971. He joined Navajo Times in 1976, and retired from full-time reporting in 2018 to move to Torrance, Calif., to be near his kids. He continued to write for the Times until his passing in August 2022.


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