Appeals court rejects Wyoming inmate's petition to be heard in reservation boundary dispute

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CHEYENNE, Wyoming — A federal appeals court has denied a request from a state prison inmate to participate in a lawsuit over the boundary of the Wind River Indian Reservation.

The U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday denied a request from Andrew Yellowbear, Jr., to file a friend-of-the-court brief.

Yellowbear is a member of the Northern Arapaho Tribe who's serving a life sentence in connection with the 2004 murder of his young daughter in Riverton.

The court denied Yellowbear's request to get involved in a lawsuit in which the state of Wyoming is appealing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's determination that lands around Riverton remain legally "Indian Country."

State and federal courts repeatedly have rejected Yellowbear's claim that the state lacked jurisdiction to prosecute him because Riverton remained Indian County.

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