A Man of Healing, a Saga of Suffering

Sari Horwitz, Washington Post, December 28, 2014

He was a world-famous medicine man, a traditional healer and spiritual leader. Followers would travel long distances to this tiny hamlet on the Great Plains to be in his presence and pray in the darkness with him in a sacred sweat lodge.

But Charles Chipps Sr., a medicine man on the Pine Ridge Indian reservation, had a dark secret, federal prosecutors say.

For years, they allege, Chipps sexually abused and raped girls, including some of his own daughters and granddaughters; many of the alleged victims were younger than 12 and several were as young as 5. A girl from Colorado whose aunt brought her to meet Chipps for spiritual guidance committed suicide after revealing the abuse she allegedly suffered.

The sexual abuse of children has long been regarded as a rampant if largely unspoken problem on Native American reservations, in part a legacy of a boarding school system that was designed to assimilate students and subjected them to widespread sexual, emotional and physical abuse, according to Native leaders and prosecutors. But Chipps’s case, as described in court testimony, is among the most shocking–entailing allegations that a respected elder sexually abused at least six girls.

It is also an illustration of the ways in which the federal, state and tribal legal maze that governs Indian country can complicate the pursuit of justice and, in Chipps’s case, allowed him to go free for three years after he was first jailed.

Child sexual abuse on the reservations is at the root of the many problems that follow for Indian children–depression, alcohol and drug abuse, juvenile detention and suicide, according to Indian country experts. The challenge of getting victims to speak out–common in child sexual assault cases anywhere–is exacerbated by the close-knit nature of the remote communities where they live.

The U.S. attorney for South Dakota, Brendan V. Johnson, said that sexual violence is one of the most common criminal offenses on the nine reservations where he shares criminal jurisdiction with the tribes, but it is extremely difficult to bring charges.

“Victims are placed under tremendous pressure by family members and friends to recant their stories,” said Johnson, who declined to discuss details of the Chipps case. “The complaint will come in, the victims will be forensically interviewed and will provide us with specific facts about what happened and then, months later, will recant their stories.”

The allegations against Chipps have torn his family apart, with some relatives and friends supporting him and others shunning him. Now 67, the medicine man has pleaded not guilty. His lawyer says he is too sick and mentally incompetent to stand trial.

In a brief interview, he declined to discuss his client’s case further.


At about the same time, Heather Dawn Thompson, a member of the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe of South Dakota, joined the U.S. attorney’s office in Rapid City. Thompson said she soon became an expert in sexual abuse cases because there were so many of them.

“There are a variety of historical reasons that people point to for this cycle in Indian country, one of which has to do with the federal policy of removing children from their homes and sending them to boarding schools during the late 1800s and much of the 1900s,” Thompson said.

Many studies tie sexual abuse to the intergenerational trauma that began in the secular and church-run boarding schools that Indian children were required to attend. Court documents and lawsuit settlements reveal how the boarding schools, especially in places like South Dakota, were centers of widespread sexual, emotional and physical abuse.

Many of the children who attended the schools are the parents and grandparents of today’s Native American children. “There were individuals who were willing to move out in the middle of nowhere in order to work at boarding schools with these children and there were some who had a pre-disposition for child sex abuse and many of the children were sexually abused,” Thompson said. “Unfortunately, that has become a cycle that was passed down from generation to generation. You compound that with the poverty, socioeconomic and isolation issues in Indian country and unfortunately that cycle has not yet been broken.”


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  • Chipps Sr. is a medicine man. Of course he is.
    And Nostradamus was a Doctor (his leaches were hand-selected).

  • David Ashton

    We are all guilty (whites that is) except the criminals.

    • TomIron361

      Yeah, well didn’t the Indians give the White people tobacco?

      • Reynardine

        And syphilis too!

        Thanks, Red Man!

        • Kyle Asher

          Syphilis may not be such a bad thing considering the ones it affects the most.

  • I am so shocked that a quack also turned out to be a pedo.

    “There are a variety of historical reasons that people point to for this cycle in Indian country, one of which has to do with the federal policy of removing children from their homes and sending them to boarding schools during the late 1800s and much of the 1900s,” Thompson said.

    That computeth not. If anything, that would reduce the chances that young Indian girls would be victimized by pedo quacks. And it’s not as if we’re not doing anymore; we’re just applying it to different non-whites. What do you think the whole Waiting for Superman mania is about? Instead of stealing a generation of Indians, we’re stealing a generation of blacks.

    • George Costanza

      Here’s ONE historical reason..It was common practice among plains indian tribes to rape female captives..

      • Jesse_from_Sweden

        To be fair, that is something that has been common practice in pretty much all societies everywhere in times of war.
        And most uncivilized areas are pretty much in a constant state of war, it takes civilization to create peace.
        Ironically, since leftists tends to blame civilisations for war. Maybe it’s because you have to first have the concept of peace before you can actually have a concept of war.

        The practice of rape as a part of warfare is something that western society changed, with it’s propensity for creating laws.
        Including laws that would regulate something normally lawless like war.
        The conventions in Hague and Geneva on behaviour in war against enemy combatants and civilians alike is once again something that is unique to the western world.

        A bit like slavery really.
        Where the main thing that the west did something that no other society ever did.
        To abolish it.
        Yet we are claimed to have been the worst perpetrators of it.

        Again, maybe it’s because you have to a have a concept of something being different before you can really make a comparison to see that something is wrong.

        • Jatt.Singh.Punjabi

          Why was my comment deleted? code of conduct in war is much older than western civilization especially geneva lol.

      • rebelcelt

        Hmmmmm, 7 generations away from a stone age existence. Since when do stone age people, any where in the world have a high sexual moral standard?

  • phorning

    The Indian reservations are like Africa, hard places to help.

  • je suis paganisme

    Hell, that is probably the way it was when they ruled the plains.

    Only there was no justice, ever . . . because there were no WHITES.

    We have not let our “holy men” get away with it. It might take some time, but we do take action.

    • SentryattheGate

      Yes, of course, the leftist media finds a way to blame the reservation pedophiles on the boarding schools run by whites. And they try to ruin the Catholic Church with the pedophilia scandals, yet don’t report on all the pedophilia going on in government schools (which is a much larger problem than in the church).

      • Earl P. Holt III

        The Corrupt Leftist Media vilify the pedophiles among Catholic Clergy, but are generally sympathetic to NAMBLA, the North American Man-Boy Love Association. (What’s a pedophile supposed to think…?)

        • SentryattheGate

          Exactly! And there’s a move afoot to legalize pedophilia, based on “research” that it’s genetic/inborn (like homosexuality, supposedly) therefore “meant to be”. Plus the press loved the movie “Kinsey” making a hero of the pedophile “sex researcher” (who even paid pedophiles for their observations while in the act)!

      • saxonsun

        “They” have not ruined the Catholic Church. The Church doesn’t need help from anyone; it does just fine ruining itself.

        • David Ashton

          The pedophilia in the Church was on a small scale but totally evil. Two (not one) contributory factors: (1) ordination of homosexuals and (2) compulsory celibacy.

  • dd121

    Why should any of us care what the Indians do to their own on their own land? Aren’t there any limits to liberal moralizing?

    • LHathaway

      Certainly that’s what this ‘expert’ was doing. Blaming their bad behavior on evil whites. It’s not considered stereotyping or ‘hatred’, as long as you are blaming white men. Quite the opposite. If you’re encouraging hatred of white men or their societies it’s considered ’empowering’. Why whites encourage this even more so than people of color is something of a mystery.

  • HJ11

    I practice indifference and non-interference in the affairs of non-Whites. They are not my kind. I don’t care what they do with their own.

  • Bossman

    Being an old pervert is not something unique to the native American tribes. Such people can be found in all ethnic groups. It is just too bad when they also masquerade as “holy men.”

    • The perviness of this pervert is on par with a Muslim.

      • Ellis Kurtz

        The underline HTML tag does not have an “l”.

    • Reynardine

      Don’t like it when we criticize one of your treasured cultural institutions, do ya, Bossman?

      I’m surprised you haven’t tried to convince us yet that child molestation is a good thing.

      • Bossman

        What are you talking about? What favorite cultural institutions? Where in any of my posts did I ever even hint of such a thing? Why are you even getting up votes for this?

        • Reynardine

          Your unwavering defense of hispanic culture suggests otherwise.

          Child molestation is practically a tradition in South America, and the age of consent is nonexistent to 12-14 in most countries there. In fact, South America is known widely as an excellent tourist destination for paedophiles because of the easy pickings and loose enforcement.

          Mexico City is a hotspot of child prostitution, as is Brazil and Colombia. The majority of child prostitution in the US takes place along the Mexican border, where hispanics sufficed with cash from US jobs take any opportunity to sexually abuse hispanic children, sold for a mere $100. As hispanics have moved northward, this treasured cultural institution has followed them, like a flea on a dog.

  • John

    “The sexual abuse of children has long been regarded as a rampant if largely unspoken problem on Native American reservations,…”. The same can be said of Orthodox Jewish communities. Just search for “orthodox Jew child abuse”. I use Ixquick for my searches and it returned 590,761 hits. YMMV.

    • Alexandra1973

      My understanding is that the Talmud gives it the okay. They need to dump that book and start reading the Torah.

      • Reynardine

        You know how Jews hate on the Samaritans? That’s because Samaritans threw out the Talmud in favor of the Torah.

        To most Jews Talmud > Torah.

        • Bossman

          What Samaritans? Where are they living now? Do you even know what you’re talking about?

          • John

            Perhaps you should use the magic, top secret, only known to a few Internet device known as a “search engine” to find out instead of asking everyone else to do your homework for you.

          • David Ashton

            Wikipedia has become a bit unreliable on certain controversial issues affecting a certain controversial people, but there is usually information on the internet or even in libraries that would save posters the annoyance of asking others for it here.

          • Reynardine

            I would like to further illustrate my points and provide sources where necessary, but I don’t think your brain can handle this Mucho White Mind conversation.

            Why don’t you go back to watching Dora the Explorer?

        • John

          That’s another reason why the Ethiopian Jews are unwelcome in Israel (aside from them being black). They’ve been isolated from the “main” Jewish community for millennium and as a consequence, have little knowledge and no history of following the Talmud.

          • Reynardine

            Other than, of course, the general racism of the ‘Brew against anyone who doesn’t look like Larry King.

          • John

            “The Brew”. I like it. Sounds like a bunch of good ‘ol boys. A southern organization that drives around in pickups with shotgun racks decorated with Confederate flags (my kind of folks) rather than the bunch of misanthropic psychos that they are. Hope you don’t mind me using it. As I’m certain you’re aware that sometimes, the indirect approach is the only one possible. Larry King looks like Larry Silverstein looks like Ruth Bader Ginsberg and they all look like Mickey Mouse’s big brother.

          • Reynardine

            Feel free to use it. I think it’s better than the “Finns” or “Amish.”

      • John

        I’m sure the Talmud give the procedure for the “mohel” to follow when he performs fellatio on an infant boy, newly circumcised, to “purify” the wound. Religiously sanctioned pedophilia. Here are a few quote from that righteous book of Jewish law,
        the Talmud. Here are a few of those “words of wisdom” that guide Jewish thought from cradle to grave….
        Sanhedrin 57a . When a Jew murders a gentile (“Cuthean”), there will be no death penalty. What a Jew steals from a gentile he may keep.
        Sanhedrin 58b. If a heathen (gentile) hits a Jew, the gentile must be killed.
        Yebamoth 98a. All gentile children are animals.
        Abodah Zarah 36b. Gentile girls are in a state of niddah (filth) from birth.
        Abodah Zarah 22a-22b . Gentiles prefer sex with cows.
        Sanhedrin 55b. A Jew may marry a three year old girl (specifically, three years “and a day” old).
        Sanhedrin 54b. A Jew may have sex with a child as long as the child is less than nine years old.
        Kethuboth 11b. “When a grown-up man has intercourse with a little girl it is nothing.”
        Baba Kamma 113a. Jews may use lies (“subterfuges”) to circumvent a Gentile.
        Insanity pervades Jewish law. If the “religion” appeared today out of thin air, it would be condemend in every civilized nation as an insane cult.

        • Reynardine

          Oy vey, haven’t you seen Jewish girls? I’d prefer cows too. At least the cows don’t drain my bank playing princess.

    • David Ashton

      There are anti-pedophilia groups among US Jews (as there used to be anti-White Slavery associations before WW2) who do not hesitate to expose and condemn rabbis and others. I turned up from one such site some 13 pages of information on the big noise Lord Janner which was virtually unobtainable in the UK. Let us hope the British police investigations, especially into sexual murder, get somewhere.

  • J.T. Thrasher

    Are we saying that there wasn’t widespread sexual abuse at the boarding schools where children were taken from their parents? Anyone worth their salt in the psychology field can tell you that abuse at a young age creates an abuser, whether physical or sexual. Now we can definitely deny that it is a white on Indian issue, as boarding schools for bastards and the retarded who were white had the same issues. One school that was shut down some time ago just made news for all of the graves of children that were found. I believe that was in Florida. The survivors have now been able to tell their stories. Articles like this , if they are posted here to bolster the perception of unfair accusations toward whites do us no favors in my opinion. Being ripped away from your family, having your language forbidden and your name taken away, topped off with abuse will definitely have generational consequences.

    • Oil Can Harry

      I will bet anything the Injuns in Central and South America have the same high rates of incest and pedophilia as our native Redskins. It’s at least partly genetic.

      That’s not to deny that there were abuses in the boarding schools but this sounds like more “blame Whitey” baloney.

  • Sick of it

    “in part a legacy of a boarding school system that was designed to
    assimilate students and subjected them to widespread sexual, emotional
    and physical abuse”

    That’s a lie – It’s genetic. Just look at Latin America.

  • Michael Mason

    Oh the wisdom of the nature-loving, peace-loving, innocent, oppressed native americans.

  • MBlanc46

    Alleged sexual abuse in the early 21st century is the consequence of the boarding school system of a century ago? That’s really a stretch. Then again, it’s not much more of a stretch than the fraternity-initiation-gang-rape hobby horse that’s currently being ridden among the elites.

    • Reynardine

      Hey kids, try the NEW GAME that’s the HOTTEST RAGE in newsrooms, media and higher academia! It’s called “BLAME WHITEY.”

      BLAME WHITEY, the game where all you have to do is find minorities or women suffering, then trace a completely superficial and ludicrous path back to White men! The wackier, the WILDER, the MORE UNBELIEVABLE the reason, the more the points!

      It’s fun for the WHOLE FAMILY! You can play it in the car, around the dinner table, on the drive to work or school. You’ll have hours of fun with BLAME WHITEY.

      Available at all fine institutions of learning and media!

      • MBlanc46

        I’ve been watching this game for about fifty years. In the beginning, there were some cases in which whites had some culpability. Recently the emphasis seems to have changed to inventing wrongs in order to blame them on whites.

  • Lord Sandwich

    Savage is as Savage does. You want some real Native American history? Read Empire of the Summer Moon. They deserved everything they got.

    • Douglas Quaid

      At your suggestion I checked out some of the reviews on Goodreads, people were calling the book “racist” and the quotations they gave from the book were the author daring to state the obvious. The white settlers were descendents of Plato, Aristotle, and civilized Christians, the Natives were buffalo hunters. People were shrieking at this, I added it to my want to read list.


        Da truff bez raysis Tontoe! – Cinserley, Charles F. Bolden Jr. <- I bez da firsist balack Aministratner at of NaSA……. K by!

      • Lord Sandwich

        The fact that Quanah Parker was the greatest Comanche chief in tribe history speaks for itself. As a people they were so low IQ that having a captive white mother rendered him a super-being by Comanche standards.

  • Yves Vannes

    There are estimated to be 60 million Americans with at least some native ancestry ( yea, even Elizabeth Warren). Allowing the reservation system to exist is insane, they should integrate as have most of their fore-bearers. The reservation system expects a largely nomadic people to sit tight while the Feds and the Casinos fork over a monthly check. No wonder they are screwed up drunks. The money should have strings attached. No wolf at the door no reason to change your behavior.

    • hastings88

      What’s your source for this figure? I highly doubt it is 60 million. There weren’t more than a few million red injuns in America (USA) when whites arrived, and most were wiped out. Not many whites would “lower” themselves to breed with them.

      • Yves Vannes

        It was a genetic study done on a random sample of whites who had been in North America for more than 4 generations by the Human Genome Project. The study was published in American Demographics and in one of the Bio academic journals. The sample was only 1500 in size but it got a lot of publicity. Maybe 5 years ago, maybe more.

        The conclusion, as I remember it, had to do with a steady mixing for the frontier population from the early 1500s through the early 1900s. Most natives did not enter the reservation system but simply mixed in with the populations of the local cities and towns. 400 years is a long time. The markers averaged less than 2% of an individuals makeup.

        Mine shows a trace. Part of my family has been here since 1651 (Quebec) so each generation since could have passed it on ( if it occurred in the 1600s). At this point that could be well into the hundreds of offspring having descended from that one night at the campfire while hunting beaver pelts.

  • Douglas Quaid

    More victims caught in a vicious cycle created by whites. These people should really figure out a way to get out of those dang cycle things…

  • WR_the_realist

    The victims own relatives pressure them to recant their claims but of course it’s all whitey’s fault.

  • Pat Kittle


    He should be sucking blood out of baby penises, like civilized people do.

    Google : — [ rabbi suck baby penis ].