Selena Not Afraid’s aunt blows up the Big Horn probe after a teen’s body is found frozen to the ground in a series of disturbing deaths
SELENA Not Afraid’s aunt, Cheryl Horn, has dropped the investigation into her niece’s death after the teen’s body was found frozen on the ground.
Horn spoke exclusively to The US Sun ahead of the premiere of Showtime’s new series Murder in Big Horn, which focuses on the deaths of Selena and other missing and murdered Indigenous women.
16-year-old Selena is a “typical teenager” who “didn’t go to parties,” Horn told The US Sun.
The teenager disappeared on January 1, 2020 after the car she was driving broke down and pulled into a rest area between Billings and Hardin, Montana.
Selena reportedly fled the rest stop on foot.
The group of people she was with got the car running again, leaving her and one other person behind, according to local NBC affiliate KULR8.
Selena’s body was recovered almost three weeks later, frozen to the ground not far from the rest area.
According to former Big Horn County Undersheriff Eric Winburn, her death was ruled accidental, with autopsy results showing that she died of hypothermia.
“No broken bones, no gunshot wounds and no violence against her body,” Winburn said at the time, according to the Independent Record.
“Murderers Get Away With It”
The new docuseries highlights suspicious deaths and disappearances that have occurred in Big Horn County, primarily between 2018 and 2020.
However, there are many more stories than these — along with a plethora of obstacles to solving cases like Selena’s, her aunt said.
“Murderers get away with this,” Horn claimed.
Horn and her family — as well as some of the families of other MMIW victims — have encountered obstacles in dealing with law enforcement.
“We all banded together after Selena,” Horn said of the victims’ families, hoping to gain information and answers about their loved ones who died.
Horn used to praise law enforcement, but now, she says, “the ball has dropped.”
“Years later, there’s still no help… that’s just the way it is.
“Raising awareness and getting the truth out is so hard.”
The FBI, Montana, Wyoming and South Dakota officials were involved in the search for Selena.
Horn said that she and her family paid for volunteers and supplies out of pocket during the search.
“We had seekers from other reservations to help us, people of the pure goodness of heart,” Horn said.
“Volunteers provide the resources.”
Horn said she was on site “24 hours a day” during the search for Selena.
She said a “conflicting prayer went out” during the search.
“Lord, please let us find her. Lord please don’t make me find her,” Horn shared as she recalled the desperation of wanting to find Selena, but the terrifying possibility of being the one who discovers her.
The investigation continued months after the teen’s body was found, with officials from the Montana Department of Justice and the Billings City Attorney’s Office working on the case.
Then, on December 23, 2020, 20-year-old Diandra Pitman was charged by prosecutors with child endangerment — a misdemeanor.
Court documents obtained by local NBC affiliate KULR8 say Selena was invited to a house party by Pitman on New Year’s Eve 2019 with intent to consume alcohol.
According to court documents obtained by the outlet, Pitman claims she passed out and that Selena was gone when she woke up.
Pitman pleaded guilty in July 2021, Billings City’s attorney confirmed to The US Sun, and received a six-month suspended sentence.
She was also sentenced to probation for misdemeanor.
In particular, Pitman’s father, Denis, was serving on the Billings City Council and Yellowstone County Commissioner at the time of Selena’s death and when Diandra was being indicted.
The US Sun has reached out to the Billings City Attorney’s Office, the Big Horn County Attorney, Big Horn County Commissioners, the Big Horn County District Court and the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Office for an update on the case receive.
The US Sun has also reached out to the Montana Department of Justice’s Criminal Investigation Division because two agents there were assigned to investigate Selena’s case back in August 2020, according to KULR8.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/7325205/selena-not-afraid-aunt-blasts-big-horn-probe-murder/ Selena Not Afraid’s aunt blows up the Big Horn probe after a teen’s body is found frozen to the ground in a series of disturbing deaths