The Wind River Indian Reservation retains significant status in Wyoming.
It is said to be Sacagawea’s final resting place.
It is also home to the only two casinos in the state.
And its crime rate is said to be five to seven times higher than the national average.
Today, The New York Times profile of Timothy Williams the Wind River Reservation, which has an area the size of Rhode Island and is home to the Shoshone and Arapaho tribes.
Apathy and disillusionment haunt the reserve, Williams writes. Its 40% dropout rate is more than double the state average; suicide among adolescents and young adults is also double.
These issues have long plagued many reservations, often leading to an increase in violence.
To address the problem, in 2010 the Obama administration embarked on a domestic “push” modeled on the US military’s 2007 strategy in Iraq. In three of the four targeted reserves, crime has been reduced.
But during the same period, violence in Wind River increased by 7%.
A family, writes Williams, has just experienced its third murder in as many generations.
“As far as crime goes, this is the pinnacle,” said Michael Shockley, a local police officer. “You see everything here.”