A Towaoc man was sentenced this week in federal court for the attempted murder of a Bureau of Indian Affairs officer last year, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Wendell Mills Jr., of Towaoc, was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.
“This sentence represents the FBI’s commitment to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law anyone who seeks to assault or kill any of our law enforcement partners,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Dean Phillips said Wednesday in a news release.
On April 8, 2018, Mills and his brother were involved in a violent scuffle with BIA officer Dalton Loggains at a Towaoc residence on Mountain Sage Road.
According to court documents, Mills, 21, and his brother had been drinking and were having a “playful” fighting match outside when they reportedly tipped over a neighbor’s portable toilet.
In response to a disturbance call, Loggains attempted to contact the brother who fled into the backyard. At that point, Mills reportedly attacked the officer from behind, and the brother joined in. A bystander tried to break up the fight.
Loggains, who was being choked, attempted to draw his service weapon. But Mills grabbed for the gun, and it fired a round, hitting hit Loggains in the calf and Wendell Mills in the thigh.
As Mills took control of the weapon, the officer released the gun’s magazine. Mills pointed what he believed was a loaded gun at the officer’s head and pulled the trigger, according to court documents. When the gun failed to fire, Mills “racked” the slide, and again tried to fire it at the head of the officer. The bystander intervened long enough for Loggains to discharge his stun gun and subdue Mills.
Another BIA officer was notified that Loggains was not responding to radio calls and arrived at the residence to assist in the arrest of Mills and his brother.
“Violence against our law enforcement community will simply not be tolerated,” said U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn, who prosecuted the case.