DENVER -- The family of a Denver woman who was arrested in the Dakota Access pipeline protest on the Standing Rock reservation spoke publicly for the first time Monday.
Red Fawn Fallis was arrested Oct. 27, along with hundreds of others, while protesting the pipeline construction that they say infringes on the tribe's traditional and sacred lands and will threaten one of our country's largest water sources.
Fallis was among 143 people, including two juveniles, arrested that day, making it the largest mass arrest since 2002, Fallis’ family members said.
Fallis’ family said the charges against her, which include attempted murder, are false. She is accused of firing a gun in the air toward police several times.
Fallis' family said her arrest affidavit clearly says the 37-year-old was targeted by police, arrested and labeled as an instigator during the protests.
Her father said Red Fawn attended the protests in part because she believes it's what her late mother and grandmother would have wanted.
"At the same time that she was arrested, she was helping people who had been pepper sprayed in their face, taking them back and helping them clean the pepper spray out of their eyes," said Rick Williams, a Lakota elder and Red Fawn's father.
Fallis’ family said she was picked out of a crowd because of her strong personality and opinions about water protection.
"They recognized her leadership as a young, indigenous woman who a lot of younger indigenous people looked to for example in leadership. So that identifies her as a target in their mind, I believe," said Glenn Morris, with the American Indian Movement of Colorado.
Fallis remains in jail in North Dakota as her family asks for support and, ultimately for her release.