Man admits murder and gun crimes in fatal shooting on Crow Indian Reservation | USAO-MT

BILLINGS – A man today admitted murder and firearms charges in the shooting death of a woman and the injury of a passenger in his vehicle along Blue Creek Road on the Crow Indian Reservation , Acting U.S. Attorney Leif Johnson said.

Transient Taylor Leigh Plain Bull, 27, pleaded guilty to second degree murder and use of a firearm in a crime of violence, as charged in an amended information. Plain Bull faces life in prison, a fine of $250,000 and five years of supervised release for murder, and a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison consecutive to any other prison sentence, a fine of $250,000 and five years supervised release for firearms.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided. Judge Watters set the sentence for July 23. Plain Bull was arrested.

In court documents filed in the case, the government alleged that on October 24, 2020, the victim, identified as Jane Doe, was driving from Pryor to Billings with a passenger, identified as John Doe, in the front passenger seat, and a child in the back seat. As Jane Doe was driving westbound on Blue Creek Road, she was passed by Plain Bull, who was driving a stolen truck eastbound toward Pryor. Plain Bull had previously been romantically involved with Jane Doe. The truck had been reported stolen from Billings and contained four firearms, including a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol.

The government alleged that after passing Jane Doe, Plain Bull turned and pursued her. He overtook his car, drove to the top of a hill and came to a side stop on the roadway, blocking the road. Plain Bull exited the truck and pointed a gun at Jane Doe’s oncoming car. Jane Doe pulled over, told John Doe it was Plain Bull, and put her car in reverse. Plain Bull got back into the truck and eventually forced Jane Doe’s car off the road into the ditch. Jane Doe was unable to get out of the ditch due to snow conditions.

The government further alleged that Jane Doe locked the car doors as Plain Bull approached the passenger side of the car with a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol. Plain Bull knocked on the passenger window and asked John Doe who he was. John Doe told Plain Bull to stay calm. Plain Bull fired two shots. The first blow shattered the glass and lodged in the dashboard. Plain Bull then reached out and put the gun to John Doe’s head. John Doe suffered a temple injury. The second bullet hit Jane Doe, who was pronounced dead at the scene by EMS.

Plain Bull left the scene with the child and dropped him off at another location. He called 911 after the shooting at least twice, shouting it was an accident and asking for an ambulance. The government said according to Plain Bull he passed Jane Doe, she saw him and tried to stop because he was going to give her money but ended up in the ditch because of the roads slippery. When Plain Bull approached the car John Doe began to upset him, he tried to whip him with a pistol and the gun went off.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lori Suek is prosecuting the case, which has been investigated by the FBI.


Nohemi M. Moore