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Dennis Chappabitty, Attorney at Law
January 29, 2007

Hello to all the Members of our case!

After receiving the Decision from The Court of Appeals on our case I though I had better touch base with you folks and let you know what has happened.

As you all know, last Fall I received notice that I had to be in Washington D.C. to argue our case before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on December 11, 2006 at 9:00am. The Court's Notice came after we filed briefs to Appeal the Decision of United States District Judge Roberts, who dismissed our case on the "Statute of Limitation's" grounds.

I was very proud to get an opportunity to orally argue Felter v. Kempthorne due to the fact that this Circuit Court of Appeals is known for its expertise in these kinds of cases. I know that I had to prepare mentally and physically so I would have a clear head when time came to get up and advocate on your behalf. The Judges on the 3 member panel were Judge Tatel, Judge Kavanaugh and Senior Circuit Judge Williams. Judge Tatel wrote the opinion for the court.

I know that on December 6th, a few days before I had to argue our case in Washington D.C., that you folks held a "Prayer Meeting" to help us on the trip and argue the case. Oranna reported to me that the Prayer Meeting was really spiritual. Lighting candles for all the members in the case and as many as could be lit for the "Spirit People" was a big success. For Linda and I, we needed a Prayer Meeting as we got ready to go back East. You all did your job on this as I felt the positive spirital energy! All of you and our Spirit People were with us in Washington D.C.

Oranna reported that there was a good turn out with our members and that the "Drum Group" did an outstanding job. She said the food was fantastic. This makes my heart feel good to know that you are all sticking together and sending prayers to the Creator for me, Linda and our members and for the success of our case. "Thank You" and keep the Prayer Meetings going. I have always believed in my own heart and soul that Felter b. Kempthorne is much more than just words on paper - This case stands for "man's inhumanity against man" carried out by our own United States COngress toward its own Native People in Utah.

We left on Saturday because the 11th fell on Monday. We were on the plane for hours, flying across the United States. I needed Sunday to get rested up and ready for the Court oral argument. On Monday, I got up early to pray to the Creator, before going into the Circuit Court to argue on your behalf.

As I looked out the window, flying alone and circling was a "Lone Hawk" gliding proudly through the sky right over downtown Washington, D.C. I took this as a sign that he would be my "Hawk Spirit Guide" and would be with me during and after the Court appearance. I asked the Hawked Spirit Guide to help us bring compassion into the Court of Appeals and into the hearts of the 3 Circuit Judges.

As Linda and I walked the steps into the Court of Appeals, I prayed hard that the Creator would be with me to help guide me through the very unique event. I knew I would do the best job I could as everything had given me confidence in our case. As I walked into the Court, I had a solid feeling that we would get justice and compassion from the Judges.

We had to wait a long time to put our argument on since another case was heard before us. When I was called to the podium in the gigantic federal courtroom, I walked up with confidence in the message I had to deliver to fully advocate the case. As I left the Court, and went back to the hotel, I felt very good that I gave a good argument. More importantly, I felt that the line of questioning that the judges directed toward the Assistant United States Attorney and me proved that the Judges were viewing our case from a "compassionate" perspective.

We had planned to leave the day after the hearing but our friends encouraged us to stay on since a number of Xmas events were scheduled and we could meet members of Congress and their staff members. All I can say was that it was an overwhelming sucess and I even met Congressman Patrick Kennedy (D Mass.) who I briefly told your story to at one of the events. Cong. Kennedy was very sympathetic with your story and he gave me his card. I will be sending him a package of information and asking him for his support in interest. We also met some very important staff members who work at the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. I told all of them that I believe the Court would issue its order and send the case back to Judge Roberts. I was right! We walked the halls of Congress and dropped on other Senators and Congressmen who listened very intently to your story and the details of the Felter case. I will let you know what I do to "follow up" on these very important Congressional contacts and discussions.

We came home with a good feeling in our hearts. I can say for certainty that this important part of our "Journey for Justice" was a success! With great confidence our efforts before the Court, we returned to Sacramento, CA and waited for the Court to make its decision.  "Part II, The Call"

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