Las Vegas police arrested former actor Nathan Lee Chasing His Horse, also known as Nathan Chasing Horse, on Tuesday on charges of sexually assaulting young Indigenous girls over the course of two decades. Chasing Horse, who played the role of Smiles a Lot in the 1990 film “Dances With Wolves,” had gained a reputation among Indigenous tribes across the US and Canada for performing healing ceremonies and spiritual gatherings.
The arrest followed a months-long investigation that began after police received a tip in October 2022. A 50-page search warrant revealed that Chasing Horse is believed to be the leader of a cult called the Circle and used his spiritual position to abuse young girls. The warrant also stated that Chasing Horse was banished from the Fort Peck Reservation in Montana in 2015 due to allegations of human trafficking.
Las Vegas police have identified at least six alleged victims, with sexual allegations against Chasing Horse dating back to the early 2000s in states including Montana, South Dakota, and Nevada, where he has lived for about a decade. The warrant includes details of crimes committed in Clark County, Nevada, including sex trafficking, sexual assault of a child under 16, and child abuse. Some of the victims were as young as 13 years old, and Chasing Horse is accused of recording the sexual assaults and arranging sex with the victims for other men in exchange for payment.
The arrest of Nathan Chasing Horse has drawn attention to the need for specialized units to handle cases involving Indigenous women. State attorneys general and lawmakers are looking into creating such units to better address crimes against Indigenous people, including human trafficking and murders.
As of Tuesday evening, no lawyer was listed in court records for Chasing Horse to comment on his behalf. His arrest and the ongoing investigation have shed light on the need for better protection and support for Indigenous women and girls, who are often targeted and marginalized in larger society.
It is important to note that all individuals are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, and the arrest and charges against Nathan Chasing Horse are just allegations at this time. Nevertheless, the case serves as a powerful reminder of the ongoing struggles faced by Indigenous communities and the need for better resources and support to address these issues.
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