Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: April 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963879 | Print ISBN: 9781412926942 | Online ISBN: 9781412963879| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Peltier, Leonard (1944–)
Leonard Peltier, a leading Native American activist and prominent member of the American Indian Movement (AIM), is currently serving two life sentences for the murder of two Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents. The case that led to his incarceration remains highly controversial. For many, Peltier is a symbol of the history of the violation of human rights of Indigenous Peoples, and he has been called the Nelson Mandela of the American Indian people. To others, he is a murderer who has been erroneously turned into a martyr. This entry looks at his life and impact. Peltier was born September 12, 1944, on the Anishinabe/Chippewa Turtle Mountain Reservation in Grand Forks, North Dakota, to Leo and Alvina Peltier. His bloodline is predominantly Ojibway (Chippewa) and Dakota Sioux. He was also adopted in the traditional Indian way by the Lakota Sioux. His parents separated when he was four years old, and ...