Pine Ridge Mother Pleads Guilty In Death Of Infant Daughter


      A Pine Ridge reservation woman has pled guilty in federal court in Rapid City to child abuse and neglect charges in the death in 2020 of her infant daughter.

         Billie Jean Red Owl was originally charged with murder for the death of the 3-month old girl. She faces up to 15 years in prison – there is no parole in the federal prison system – when she’s sentenced later this year.

     The factual basis statement that’s part of the plea agreement shows drug testing on Red Owl after the infant died found she had multiple drugs in her system at the time, including marijuana, methamphetamine, and amphetamine. 

        Doctors reported the 3-month old had scarring on her neck and signs of dehydration while the soft spot on her head found on all infants was sunken in about an inch.