FTCA Suit Brought against Federal Bureau of Prisons for Death of Andrea Circle Bear

Here is the complaint in LeBeau v. United States (D.S.D.):

We posted news coverage here way back when. Ms. Circle Bear was the first federal prisoner to die of COVID in 2020. According to the complaint, she was 8 months pregnant in March 2020 when the government decided to transfer her to a prison in Texas, where she immediately contracted the virus. She gave birth while intubated.

Eighth Circuit Rejects Federal Tort Claim against US involving Rosebud Indian Health Clinic Employee Car Accident

Here is the opinion in Two Eagle v. United States.

The briefs:

South Dakota Federal Court Rejects Federal Effort to End Suit against Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe

Here are the materials in Roeman v. United States (D.S.D.):

New Mexico Federal Court Allows FTCA Claim over Navajo Irrigation Project Damage

Here are the materials (So far) in Navajo Agricultural Products Industries v. United States (D.N.M.):

North Dakota Federal Court Dismisses FTCA Claim arising from BIA Road Maintenance Negligence under “Discretionary Function Exception”

Federal (and tribal) discretion at work.

Here are the materials in Mound v. United States (D.N.D.):

1 Complaint

9 Federal Motion to Dismiss

19 Response

23 Reply

32 US Post Hearing Brief

33 Mound Post Hearing Brief

Federal Court Certifies Interlocutory Appeal to Address “Law of the Place” Question under Federal Tort Claims Act Claim Brought at Acoma

Here are the materials so far in Ray v. United States (D.N.M.):

1 Complaint

35 Ray Motion for Summary J

37 Response

40 DCT Order

54 DCT Order re Certification of Appeal

Ninth Circuit Rejects Wrongful Termination Claim against US involving Sauk-Suiattle

Here is the unpublished opinion in Dahlstrom v. United States.


Opening Brief

Answer Brief


Lower court materials here.

Tenth Circuit Issues Decision Favoring US in 2016 Dog Head Fire at Isleta Pueblo

Here is the opinion in Ohlsen v. United States.


Opening Brief

US Brief


An excerpt:

In the summer of 2016, a large fire, later known as the Dog Head Fire, engulfed Isleta Pueblo and United States Forest Service land in the Manzano Mountains of New Mexico. By the time it was extinguished, the fire had burned several thousand acres of land. The fire resulted from forest-thinning work performed by Pueblo crewmembers under an agreement with the Forest Service. The partnership to thin the forest arose after numerous fires had beset the surrounding areas.

Insurance companies and several owners of destroyed property (collectively, “Appellants”) sued the government, alleging negligence under the Federal Tort Claims Act (“FTCA”). Their negligence claims fell into two categories: the government’s own negligence arising from acts of Forest Service employees, and the government’s negligence arising from acts of the Pueblo crewmembers. The government moved to dismiss, arguing that the court lacked jurisdiction and, alternatively, for summary judgment on that same basis. The district court granted the government summary judgment. First, the court concluded that the Pueblo crewmembers had acted as independent contractors of the government, and thus, the government wasn’t subject to FTCA liability based on the Pueblo crewmembers’ negligence. Additionally, the court barred these claims under the FTCA’s administrative-exhaustion requirement. Second, the court barred Appellants’ claims premised on the Forest Service employees’ own negligence, under the FTCA’s discretionary-function exception.

On appeal, Appellants contend that the district court erred in ruling that the FTCA jurisdictionally barred their claims. We disagree. Exercising jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291, we affirm.