Bluffs beer distributor halts direct deliveries to Whiteclay

A Scottsbluff beer distributor is halting direct beer deliveries to retailers in Whiteclay because of continued attacks by activists against his employees and equipment, including an incident this past Monday.

Jeff Scheinost with High Plains Budweiser says Monday's situation involving a delivery and pellets from a high powered rifle fired from across the border endangered his employees. Scheinost says the employees heard "five distinct reports from a weapon of some sort. One round struck the top of the front of the truck and one round zinged over the top of their heads."

Scheinost says his delivery trucks for the time being will go only as far as Rushville, where someone from the stores in Whiteclay will pick up what they need. Scheinost says the situation is "so volatile" that he "will not put the health and welfare of my employees in jeopardy any more."

The activists protesting the impact of Whiteclay beer sales on social problems on the Pine Ridge reservation across the South Dakota border have been more brazen in their protests over the last two months, vandalizing beer trucks and threatening the delivery employees with violence.

It is not known at this time whether Dietrich Distributing, the other Scottsbluff beer distributor that makes deliveries to Whiteclay, is changing its delivery method as well.

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