U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Arizona
(602) 514-7500
November 20, 2015

Pinon Man Sentenced to 210 Months in Prison for Second-Degree Murder

PHOENIX—On Nov. 2, 2015, Leland Sam Buckinghorse, 31, a member of the Navajo Nation, of Pinon, Ariz., was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Susan R. Bolton to 210 months’ imprisonment. Buckinghorse previously pleaded guilty to second degree murder.

On Dec. 11, 2014, Buckinghorse engaged in an argument with the victim outside of Buckinghorse’s house on the Navajo Nation Indian Reservation. Buckinghorse went inside his house and located a .22 caliber rifle, loaded the rifle, went back outside, and shot the unarmed victim once in the chest area. The victim, also a member of the Navajo Nation, died as a result of his injuries.

The investigation in this case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Navajo Nation Police Department. The prosecution was handled by Kiyoko Patterson, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix.

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