Continuing the murder case of a nun on Navajo Reservation to illiustrate what "justice" or lack thereof is available in Navajo Reservation.
Jill (Jilleda Jay John case goes UNSOLVED and is now a "cold case, despite evidence left at crime scene in Del Muerto/Canyon de Chelly.
No REWARD poster as promised by FBI in Jill’s case.) So now it’s a question of "sovereingty & jurisdiction? What about JUSTICE for all of the unsolved murders and victims in Navajoland?!
Even The New York Times did a story on the murdered nun, but not a murdered young mother, Jilleda Jay John:
Navajo teen charged with killing of nun in New Mexico, death penalty sought
The Associated Press
Friday, November 6th 2009, 11:09 PM
Reehahlio Carroll holds down the top of his jumpsuit so he can be photographed by police in an interrogation room at the Navajo Police department in Window Rock, Ariz.
Diocese of Gallup/AP
The 64-year-old nun was found dead in her residence at St. Berard Mission Church on the Navajo Indian reservation.
A makeshift shrine for Sister Marguerite Bartz hangs on the fence around the Saint Berard Catholic Church in Navajo, N.M.
A teenager was charged Friday with killing a nun after allegedly breaking into her trailer home on the Navajo Indian reservation in search of cash or valuable items.
Federal authorities accused Reehahlio Carroll
, 18, of Navajo of "unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought" in the death of 64-year-old Sister Marguerite Bartz
, who served at St. Berard Catholic Church in Navajo.
Carroll was expected to appear in federal court on Monday, said Norm Cairns
, a spokesman for the U.S.
attorney’s office. Cairns said the charge against Carroll might make him eligible for the death penalty, but the Navajo Nation
would first have to allow the U.S. government to pursue it.
Carroll’s attorney, Robert Gorence
, said he had no comment on the case.
According to the federal criminal complaint, Carroll told investigators he broke into Bartz’s trailer home shortly after midnight Sunday looking for cash or valuable items when Bartz struck him in the face with a shoe.
He hit her with a flashlight, knocking her to the ground, then hit her in the head five or six times with the flashlight and kicked her in the back and face, the complaint alleged.
Carroll left the room, searching for more items in the trailer, but heard Bartz screaming.
"In an effort to silence the woman, Reehahlio Carroll took a black shirt that was in the room and, while standing over the woman’s body, tied the shirt over the woman’s mouth, fastening the shirt with a knot tied at the back of the woman’s head," the complaint said.
Carroll stole a mini-SUV that Bartz was using while her roommate, another nun, was on an out-of-state trip. The vehicle was later found near Cottonwood, Ariz.
A witness told investigators that Carroll picked up friends in the vehicle Sunday morning, the complaint said.
Bartz’s body was discovered in a pool of blood Sunday by another nun, who went to check on her after she failed to show up for mass in nearby Sawmill, Ariz.
Carroll was arrested Thursday and charged under Navajo law with the unauthorized use of a car that had belonged to Bartz, which was stolen four days after her murder, Navajo Nation court records and authorities said. He allegedly led officers on a chase through residential areas of Navajo, Navajo Nation complaints said.
Carroll pleaded not guilty to a Navajo Nation reckless driving charge in Window Rock, Ariz. Navajo Nation court officials said he would remain in custody in Window Rock until Monday, when he is expected to be arraigned on two other minor charges related to the chase.
Friends and co-workers said Bartz was dedicated to working with the poor and oppressed and often counseled those with difficulties in the economically depressed town.
The Diocese of Gallup
, which oversees the parish in Navajo, said in a statement that they are "relieved that law enforcement has apprehended and charged a suspect in this case."
"Though, there is a sense of grief in the Catholic community not just for the tragic loss of our sister, but also the gift she was to the people she so faithfully served," the statement said.
Sister Patricia Suchalski
, president of Bartz’s order, the 118-year-old Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, said the sisters and Bartz’s family were trying to practice forgiveness ahead of her rosary Friday and her funeral Mass on Saturday. Bartz was the eldest of eight siblings.
"We will still work within our legal system of justice. It’s not a matter of saying this is OK. It’s not," Suchalski said. "But not to forgive would be to dishonor her life."
Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/2009/11/06/2009-11-06_teen_charged_with_killing_in_new_mexico.html#ixzz0gmVk89Ce
"Not to forgive would dishonor her life"… Forgiveness of evil is one thing, AFTER they are tried in a court of law.
Do we have to forgive and not bring justice to those who kill other people?
Do we just let it go? How do we explain the murder to a child when he gets old enough to wonder what really happened to his Mommy (in Jill’s case)?
How do we stop him from becoming a product of Navajoland’s social and economic woes?
I know that there are alot of hurting family members in Jill’s unsolved muder case. I am being asked, "What can we do?"
In lame attempts I make half-baked promises to help (as though I have any power?)
I suggest writing to America’s Most Wanted, A& E’s Cold Case files. Telephoning Native America Calling for a call-in show on victims of crime in Indian Country.
Perhaps Nancy Grace would finally reply and at least show Jill’s picture for a few seconds on the anniversary of her going missing this March?
But, as a non-direct family member, I have very little power over what can be done. Not even my suggestions can be done by me. They must be done by the direct family.
There is part of the problem. The father travels for work and has limited ability to deal with the CI’s (Criminal Investigators) so he has asked another family member to help in the case. The C.I.’s did use this person to help them, but then "locked them out" of what was going on since they were not the direct line/parent. The mother is raising Jill’s child.
Everything was placed in the hands of two other relatives. The FBI doesn’t "recognize" these relatives and keeps them OUT of the case. Now the case is "cold" they are told.
The Navajo Nation itself is also responsible for the fact that possible suspects were not questioned. Even in the Carroll case with the murdered Nun Bartz, the Navajo Nation said that protocal wasn’t followed to extradite the young man and take him into Federal Marshall’s custody. (Carroll admitted killing Bartz, and there was more evidence such as his footprints in blood at her trailer home).
The law has many grey areas. No one wants to stomp all over Sovereignty, but do we want murderers walking the canyons in Navajoland?
Tributes continue for slain nun, accused murderer in jail
By Noel Lyn Smith
WINDOW ROCK, Nov. 25, 2009
he outpouring of tributes for Sister Marguerite Bartz continues three weeks after her death.
The Diocese of Beaumont honored Bartz during a memorial Mass Nov. 21 at Infant Jesus Catholic Church in Lumberton, Texas.
Bartz spent most of her young years in Beaumont. She was a parishioner of St. Anthony Cathedral Basilica and is a 1963 graduate of Monsignor Kelly High School. She entered the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in 1966 from Beaumont.
This connection was a reason for the service, Bishop Curtis Guillory said in a telephone interview Tuesday.
"The people of the diocese were saddened by her death," he said.
Bartz was found dead Nov. 1 in her convent at St. Berard Parish in Navajo, N.M. A local resident, Reehahlio Carroll, 18, is accused of her murder.
The 64-year-old nun still has family and friends who live in southeast Texas. In attendance at the Mass were several of Bartz’s family members, Guillory said.
"What was very good was that Sister Bartz’s mother came out," he said. "She was most appreciative of the memorial Mass and the great number of people who turned out."
During the service, Guillory presented a cross he had blessed to Bartz’s mother, Barbara, who did not attend the Nov. 7 funeral service in Gallup due to health concerns.
During the service, Guillory celebrated Bartz’s 43 years of service and the unique way she ministered.
"She saw gifts in the different cultures," he said.
On a personal note, Guillory said Bartz taught his younger brothers and sisters in Lawtell, La., when she served a mission there in 1975.
The Mass also provided the diocese and its members an opportunity to pray for Carroll and his family.
"Sister would have wanted that," Guillory said.
Meanwhile, Carroll continues to be in federal custody. He made an initial appearance Nov. 12 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Richard Puglisi in Albuquerque.
At the hearing, Puglisi ruled there is probable cause to hold Carroll with Bartz’s murder.
Carroll allegedly killed Bartz during a burglary in the nun’s trailer shortly after midnight Nov. 1. Bartz’s body was discovered later in the day after she did not show up for church.
Puglisi also denied bail and ordered Carroll to remain in federal custody since he is considered a flight risk and a danger to the community.
The decision was made after the court heard testimony from FBI Agent John Pierson. Pierson testified that shoe imprints were found in the blood in the home and outside a window, and a bloodied flashlight was found in a vehicle that belonged to Bartz’s roommate, according to a story by the Associated Press.
That vehicle was reported stolen and was found Nov. 2 in Cottonwood, Ariz.
Carroll was charged with first-degree murder in a Nov. 6 federal criminal complaint after tribal police arrested him Nov. 5 in Navajo for multiple traffic violations involving another vehicle.
He was in tribal jail until Nov. 10, when federal authorities took custody of him.
Tribal Chief Prosecutor Bernadine Martin appeared before Puglisi during the Nov. 12 hearing and claimed the federal government did not follow the Navajo Nation’s extradition procedures when they took Carroll into custody.
Martin attempted to quash the federal case, a motion that was denied by Puglisi.
Martin’s written request to the court states that the tribe did not receive any paperwork from the U.S. Attorney’s Office charging Carroll with a crime to justify handing him over to federal marshals.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Yarbrough told Puglisi that he believes proper procedures were followed and the tribe received a copy of the federal affidavit and complaint, according to the AP report.
No one was available to comment at the U.S. Attorney’s Office by press time Tuesday. Carroll’s lawyer, Robert Gorence, said federal prosecutors have 30 days to present their case to a grand jury.
The preliminary cause of death, issued by the New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator, was trauma to Bartz’s head. The office has not issued a complete autopsy report.
(All articles Reposted Under Fair Use Act)
No further updates have been found on the case which was scheduled to have preliminary hearings again in Jan. 2010. Carroll has been free to walk the streets all of this time.
(more to come next addition here)