Man pleas not guilty to two charges in Nov. 2020 shooting death

Published: Mar. 3, 2021 at 7:15 PM CST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - Phillip Pond pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to the charges of second degree murder and the use of a gun in the commission of a violent crime.

Court documents said on November 23, 2020, Pond shot Justin Little Hawk in the left shoulder after the two got into an argument at the North Ridge Housing on the exterior boundaries of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

The documents said Little Hawk and Pond were in a car with another person and they began arguing. Pond reportedly shot Little Hawk, who was airlifted to Monument Health. Little Hawk died on December 11.

The other person with the two at the time of the shooting said they did not know Pond had a gun when they got into the car. They later said they did not know why Pond and Little Hawk were arguing.

If convicted, Pond could face up to life in prison. He repeatedly requested a speedy jury trial.

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