Three Sheridan teens made their first appearance in 4th Judicial District Court on Tuesday. 19-year-old Dennis Poitra, Jr., 16-year-old Wyatt Bear Cloud, and 16-year-old Dharminder Vir Sen were arraigned before District Court Judge John Fenn. All three men are charged with 1st Degree Murder or Accessory to 1st Degree Murder in the August 26th shooting death of Sheridan resident Robert Ernst. They are also charged with two counts of Aggravated Burglary each.
The prosecution has elected not to seek the death penalty against Poitra based on the alleged fact that he was not the man who pulled the trigger and the state is prohibited from seeking the death penalty against the two younger defendants.
Both Bear Cloud and Sen have filed motions to transfer their cases to juvenile court. Judge Fenn asked Casper Judge Thomas Sullins to rule on the motions.
All three men entered not-guilty pleas to all the counts against them. Their trials have tentatively been set for March 8-19th. However, the State will be asking to separate the trials of the defendants and that could expand the length of time needed for the trials. The burglary charges carry sentences up to 25 years in prison and a murder conviction would require a sentence of life in prison.