Two brothers from the Ute Mountain Ute tribe are being detained at the La Plata County Jail without bond after fighting with a Bureau of Indian Affairs officer Sunday at a Towaoc residence.
Wendell Mills and Wambli Mills were arrested Sunday on probable cause for alleged assault with intent to commit murder in Indian Country, according to a criminal complaint filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Durango.
On Thursday, Bond was denied for both men.
The BIA officer and Wendell Mills were shot during the scuffle, according to a federal affidavit.
Both were both transported to Southwest Memorial Hospital and treated and released for leg wounds, said Montezuma County Sheriff Steve Nowlin, who had deputies at the scene.
The incident began as a disturbance call about 4:15 p.m. Sunday, April 8, on Mountain Sage Road. Witnesses reported that Wendell Mills and Wambli Mills had been drinking and were having a “playful” fighting match, according to the affidavit. They reportedly had tipped over a neighbor’s portable toilet, then returned to their residence.
When BIA officer Dalton Loggains arrived at the residence in response to a disturbance call, he entered the house to make contact with suspect Wambli Mills, who fled out the back of the house with Loggains in pursuit.
At that point, Wendall Mills allegedly “charged officer Loggains from behind and attacked him,” the affidavit said. The brothers began fighting Loggains, while another brother, Jake Mills, attempted to break it up.
During the fight, Loggains attempted to draw his service weapon, and Wendell and Wambli Mills allegedly grabbed for the gun, which discharged. The round hit Loggains in the calf and struck Wendell Mills in the thigh.
As the three continued to struggle for the gun, Loggains pressed the gun’s magazine release button, causing the magazine containing the ammunition to drop out.
After the gun fell into the dirt, Wendell Mills dove for it, and Jake Mills fought him for control of the handgun. Wendell Mills was attempting to point the weapon at both Jake Mills and Loggains, but Jake Mills forced him to point the weapon away from Loggains, the report said, then knocked the weapon away and tossed it farther from the fight.
Loggains finally freed himself and shot his stun gun, hitting Wendell Mills and Wambli Mills with electrically charged prongs.
Meanwhile, BIA Lt. Mark Scott was notified that Loggains was not responding to radio calls from dispatch. Scott went to the residence and assisted Loggains in handcuffing Wendell Mills and Wambli Mills.
The BIA, Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office, Colorado State Patrol and a local ambulance responded to the scene, and the case is under investigation by the BIA and FBI.
Wendell Mills and Wambli Mills are scheduled for an arraignment on April 16 at 9:30 a.m. in U.S. District Court in Durango.
jmimiaga@the-journal,comDurango Herald reporter Mia Rupani contributed to this report.