President Obama Must Free Leonard Peltier
After 38 Years, Time to Release Indigenous Leader Leonard Peltier
- questions about evidence linking Leonard Peltier to the shootings.
- coercion of an alleged eye-witness who said she had seen Leonard Peltier shoot the two agents, but who later retracted her testimony, and who was not allowed to be called as a defence witness at Leonard Peltier's trial.
- the withholding of evidence by the prosecution at trial, including potentially key ballistics evidence, that might have assisted Leonard Peltier's defense.
- The US Court of Appeal for the Eighth Circuit, which, ruling against a motion for a new trial, said in 1986: "We recognize that there is some evidence in this record of improper conduct on the part of some FBI agents, but we are reluctant to impute even further improprieties on them."
- Gerald Heaney, the judge who presided over Leonard Peltier's appeal hearing in 1986, subsequently expressed his concerns about the case in a letter to Senator Daniel Inouye, Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Indian Affairs in 1991, expressing his belief that: "the FBI used improper tactics in securing Peltier's extradition from Canada [where Leonard Peltier fled following the shootings] and in otherwise investigating and trying the Peltier case." He added: "Although our Court decided that these actions were not grounds for reversal, they are, in my view, factors that merit consideration in any petition for leniency filed."