Ashley HeavyRunner Loring, a 20-year-old member of the Blackfeet Nation, was last heard from around June 8, 2017. Since then her family has logged about 40 searches for her on the 1.5 million acre reservation in Montana, an area the size of Delaware. Ashley's disappearance is one small chapter in what one senator calls an epidemic, the unsettling story of missing and murdered Native American women and girls. No one knows precisely how many there are in the U.S., partly because some go unreported and others haven’t been accurately documented. In Montana alone, Native American females account for some 30 percent of missing cases but make up only 3.3 percent of the state’s population. Now, in the era of #MeToo, the issue of missing and murdered Native American women and girls is gaining political traction as an expanding activist movement focuses on Native women, a population known to experience some of the nation’s highest rates of sexual violence and domestic abuse.
Photos, Video, Editing, Music by David Goldman