A Crow Agency man who beat another man with a pry bar as retaliation for an assault on his son will spend 18 months in federal prison.
U.S. District Judge Susan Watters on Wednesday sentenced Wendell Lester Wolf Black Sr., 46, to the term. The guideline range was 33 to 41 months.
Watters said she departed from the guidelines because of the victim’s conduct in a previous assault on Wolf Black’s son, which left him with serious injuries, and because the victim had continued harassing Wolf Black’s son. The judge also recognized Wolf Black’s cooperation in the case and noted that he admitted the crimes without a plea agreement.
But Watters also said the sentence would punish Wolf Black.
“We can’t have people taking the law into their own hands,” she said.
Wolf Black pleaded guilty in September to assault with a dangerous weapon and assault resulting in serious injury for the attack June 18, 2012, at the victim’s home in Dunmore on the Crow Reservation.
“I just lost my temper that day and alcohol was involved,” Wolf Black said.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Lori Suek said a previous assault in which the victim, who was not identified, and his brother beat Wolf Black’s son with his own crutches, causing permanent injuries, led to the pry-bar assault.
Prosecutors said Wolf Black and his two sons drove to the victim’s home, where Wolf Black attacked the victim outside with the bar, hitting him in the leg, back and head. The victim fell to the ground and was unable to defend himself.
The victim was treated for multiple broken bones and a collapsed lung, Suek said.