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Crow Tribe Chairman: Meth fueled deadly shooting in Lodge Grass - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Crow Tribe Chairman: Meth fueled deadly shooting in Lodge Grass

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(MTN News Photo) (MTN News Photo)
LODGE GRASS -

Methamphetamine fueled the deadly shooting in Lodge Grass on Friday, according to the Crow Tribe of Indians chairman.

Chairman Alvin Not Afraid Jr. released a statement on Saturday evening remarking of the "deep sadness" the shooting has left the Crow Tribe.

"I want to offer my condolences to the family and friends of those involved. I ask all Crow Members, and all Montanans, to pray for those of us affected by this tragedy as we mourn the loss of life," he stated.

Not Afraid did not specifically identify the individuals involved, including those injured and killed, but referenced the families in the statement.

The county coroner said names would likely be released Sunday morning. The autopsies are complete but results are still pending.

In his statement, Not Afraid pointed to the lack of law enforcement that was a factor in leading to the shooting.

"Since 2015 I have observed the lack of law enforcement and emergency health services in the 6 communities throughout the crow Indian reservation," he stated. "The shortage of law enforcement and emergency health services are more prevalent today. Currently the local BIA Law Enforcement has half the workforce positions vacant. Due to these unoccupied positions it puts a heavy burden on the current Law Enforcement working hard to ensure public safety in these communities."

Not Afraid said the cost of fighting meth is substantial and thanked agencies that responded to Friday's shooting. He also stated the tribe has amended its budget to hire three tribal law enforcement officers this week.

"This does not solve the problem in its entirety. We shall continue to amend our budget for emergency medical services and rehabilitation services."

"Drugs have a devastating affect on our communities, and yesterday’s incident is a reminder of that. But the coming days and weeks will prove the strength of the Crow Community as we come together to find healing and hope, where today we feel pain and loss. Thank you, and may God grant us the wisdom to find peace."

Families of the victims involved, according to the chairman, include Blaine, White, Nomee, Hunts the Arrow, Stewart, Morning, Hoops, Falls Down, Takes the Horse and Not Afraid. 

At last word from FBI officials, there have been no arrests at this time. A suspect remains on the loose. 

On Friday, an emergency curfew was implemented by the Crow Tribe Executive Branch for the entirety of the Crow Reservation, its residents and any vehicles driving through. It remains in effect on Saturday. The curfew may be extended beyond Sunday.

The investigation is ongoing.

Related: Emergency curfew implemented for Crow Reservation

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