Tribal-Federal-State Jurisdiction and its Relationship to Public Safety in Indian Country

Tribal-Federal-State Jurisdiction and its Relationship to Public Safety in Indian Country
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1 Resources
Recorded on: 2019-08-13
Unit 1 Slide Deck: Tribal-Federal-State Jurisdiction and its Relationship to Public Safety in Indian Country
Unit 2 Workbook - Tribal-Federal-State Jurisdiction and its Relationship to Public Safety in Indian Country
Unit 3 Recording: Tribal-Federal-State Jurisdiction and its Relationship to Public Safety in Indian Country

The plight of Native Americans is a convoluted one. From being the guardians of the land, they were robbed off of it or relocated or were left with a tiny parcel of what they had. With their distinctive culture and tradition, Tribal Nations were deemed sovereign nations albeit situated within the United States.  They have their own laws, and in effect, their own law enforcement which created complexities on law enforcement jurisdiction. This webinar aims to understand the history and intricacies to consider when working with tribal nations.

The expert resource and instructor for this course is David J. Rogers. David served in the criminal justice field for more than four decades in various roles and is enrolled with the Nez Perce tribe of Idaho. Currently, he is the CEO and Chief Instructor of Tribal Public Safety Innovations (TPSI).

Topics discussed in this session include:

  • A look into the tribes’ early civilization, their concept of criminal authority and property.
  • The policies applied to govern relations between Indians and the governments of Spain and the United Kingdom.
  • A look into the recognition of Tribal Nations under the Articles of Confederation and the US Constitution.
  • Court decisions that served as foundations of tribal nation’s sovereignty.
  • Treaties entered by various European nations with the tribes that were used in court in cases of state interference.
  • The conflict between the territorial and tribal government in the Crow Dog case which became the first historical model of restorative justice.
  • The Major Crimes Act which was passed as a result of the Crow Dog case which restricted tribal jurisdiction and ensured felony cases are handled by the federal government.
  • The Allotment Era and Dawes Act of 1887 which forced assimilation between tribal and non-tribal population, where portions of tribal lands were opened for settlement and boarding schools separated tribal children from their parents.
  • The Reorganization Era that granted US citizenship to Native Americans, provided religious and cultural freedom, opened up skills training for jobs, and established the National Congress of American Indians.
  • The Termination/Relocation Era that ended the existence of certain tribes and tribal members forced to relocate to the cities for manufacturing jobs.
  • The devastating effects of Public Law 280 with the handover of the jurisdiction from the federal government to the states
    • How it created fiscal and jurisdictional issues for the tribes.
    • Examples of jurisdiction challenges that resulted from PL 280.
    • Operations challenges faced by tribal law enforcement.
  • The Self-Determination Era that gave Native Americans more protection on their culture, religion, ancestral lands and children, and granted education and civil rights.
  • The common issues faced by Indian Country currently when it comes to crimes and law enforcement, and the changes being adopted to address these.
  • Understanding the Indian Jurisdiction chart used as the basis for cases that involve Native Americans.
  • Case examples of how Indian Country implement criminal justice and law enforcement.
  • During the Q&A, David clarified inquiries from the course participants about:
    • Who serves as the Indian Country’s ambassador.
    • The federal agencies’ responsiveness in investigating felony crimes on tribal lands.
    • How drug cartels and human traffickers take advantage of tribal lands near the borders for illegal transactions and how to help Tribal Police address these problems.
    • Hiring in Tribal Police Agencies.
    • Tribal police that do not carry weapons.
    • The applicability of Felony Crimes Act to felony animal cruelty.
    • Tribal practices that may be applied to non-tribal law enforcement/probation/corrections agencies.


Audience Comments

  • “There are many jurisdiction differences. The differences also vary from Tribe to Tribe. This webinar was full of a lot of information.” — Kelly
  • “It wasn’t just one particular thing the webinar on a whole was informative.” — Arnessa
  • “I better understand what caused the jurisdictional conflict and what was being done to try to change it.” — Bree
  • “Very interesting topic! our jurisdiction borders three separate reservations (same tribe) so we are frequently assisting one another on calls.” — Dan
  • “Excellent refresher and new information on Native American history and current status for tribal jurisdiction. Would love to know more…” — Dora
  • “The whole subject was valuable, useful and meaningful. The best Lessons Learned are experiences distilled from US history that should be actively taken into account in future initiatives. Thanks again for the informative presentation.”   — Dia
  • “Great overview and a really knowledgable presenter! This is an important topic!!” — Julie
  • “I learned so much about the history of the struggle for justice in tribal nations. I would really like to see more on current activities and programs in the tribes and any pending congressional activities proposed by the tribes. Very interesting!!” — Kelley
  • “Would like to see more from this presenter. Very knowledgeable and a good teacher on a complex subject. Thanks.” — Kirk
  • ” An extremely knowledgeable presenter… provided a lot of information on this important topic. I can’t isolate one single thing that was the most valuable, however, learning about Ex Parte Crow Dog as well as the US Indian Policy era was very critical in helping to better understand Native America history. I’ll be looking forward to the next presentation given by Mr. Rogers.” — Nancy
  • “This was an excellent training on a topic area that is not discussed frequently enough.” — Wesley



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