A ‘white supremacist’ who named her children ‘Aryan’ and ‘Nation’ has been seen in court for the first time since being charged with the murder of a Native American woman.
Sunny K. White, 28, appeared in Lake County Court, Montana, Wednesday morning to face five felony charges, including vehicular homicide while under the influence.
White is said to have struck Mika Westwolf, 22, while driving along a Montana highway in her gold 2008 Cadillac Escalade in the early hours of March 31.
The case ignited the ire of the Indigenous community as a bungled police probe led to allegations of a cover-up and systemic racism.
After seven months of tireless campaigning from Westwolf’s family, White was charged with five felonies over the weekend, including vehicular homicide while under the influence.
Sunny White, 28, appears in court for the first time since being charged with the murder of a Native American whom she struck in her gold 2008 Cadillac Escalade in Montana
Mika Westwolf, 22, was struck and killed by White’s car as she was walking on the shoulder of a highway in Montana in the early morning hours of March 31
It is thought White’s children, Aryan, 4, and Nation, 2, were in the car at the time
A search warrant on White’s car returned methamphetamine, five syringes and two unopened packs of Narcan.
Her blood sample came back positive for fentanyl and methamphetamine.
White posted a $200,000 bond on Sunday after being transferred from Flathead County to Lake County, jail records show.
She was supposed to get a drug monitoring patch as a condition of her release, but had failed to do so by the time she appeared in court on Wednesday.
The judge told her she needed to do so by 5pm that afternoon.
White agreed, and is scheduled to appear in person for an arraignment on November 8 at 9am, according to NBC Montana.
Westwolf had been walking home from a bar when she was hit by White’s Cadillac, according to an affidavit filed Monday, seen by AlertContent.com.
Her body was discovered on the side of a road alongside vehicle debris by a tribal officer at 4.15am on March 31.
Around an hour later, a Lake County deputy saw White beside a vehicle with front-end damage and missing a passenger side rearview mirror, which matched the description provided by the tribal officer.
White told the deputy that she had hit a deer and not stopped, the affidavit states. Her two children, Aryan, 4, and Nation, 2, are suspected to have been in the car at the time of the crash.
In an official statement to a Montana Highway Patrol trooper, White denied using alcohol, and said she hadn’t used fentanyl or methamphetamine in the last week.
White was originally arrested on two counts of child endangerment, but charges were dropped ‘without prejudice’ – meaning they can be brought back – on April 6.
She also faces charges for accidents involving another person or deceased person, two counts of criminal child endangerment and one charge of criminal possession of dangerous drugs, Lake County court documents show.
Westwolf (left) with her mother, Carissa Heavy Runner, (right) who campaigned for justice
Westwolf’s family described her as a ‘philosopher,’ ‘writer,’ and an ‘old soul’
Lead investigator Wayne Bieber originally appeared to suggest to Mika’s mother, Carissa (right) that White was not in jail because the results of a toxicology report on Mika were still pending
White’s two children are named Aryan, 4, and Nation, 2
Arlee, Montana, where the accident took place is on the Flathead Indian Reservation
Following her homicide charge, Westwolf’s family released a statement saying the arrest was ‘just the beginning of the journey towards justice’.
The investigation into their daughter’s death sparked fury among the Indigenous community after notes obtained by AlertContent.com appeared to show police had failed to collect vital evidence.
Lead investigator Wayne Bieber admitted during an April 21 meeting with Westwolf’s mother and stepfather that their daughter’s clothing wasn’t tested – as is standard procedure – and that it had not been ‘handled in a proper manner’.
He also conceded that, three weeks after the crash, he had not collected surveillance video from businesses or the railroad along the highway where Westwolf walked, explaining that there ‘were always multiple things going on at once’.
Bizarrely, Bieber seemed to suggest that White was not in jail because it was not yet known whether Mika was intoxicated while walking home.
The investigator also appeared reluctant to entertain the possibility that the incident could have been a hate crime, or that White was a white supremacist.
The Indigenous community rallied around Westwolf’s family, organizing a series of protests citing ‘systemic racism’, ‘bias’ and ‘a lack of commitment from prosecutors and investigators’.
While Native Americans account for 6.7 percent of Montana’s population, they account for 26 percent of the state’s active missing persons cases on average.
Overall, Native women face a murder rate that is nearly 10 times the national average.