Idaho Attorney General says granting tribes criminal jurisdiction is constitutional

Idaho’s attorney general says a proposed state bill to give Indian tribes authority to arrest non-tribal citizens on reservations without a county sheriff’s consent would be constitutional.

The Coeur d’Alene Tribe has proposed the bill amid a dispute with Benewah County Sheriff Bob Kirts.

The tribe says Kirts won’t respond to tribal calls for help and refuses to reinstate a cross-deputization pact that unraveled in 2007.

Benewah County and some of its lawmakers have argued giving arrest authority to tribes would violate the constitutional rights of non-tribal citizens.

But Attorney General Lawrence Wasden’s staff concluded such a law wouldn’t displace a sheriff’s authority, but would merely expand how tribal law enforcement could secure “peace officer status.”

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0 Responses to Idaho Attorney General says granting tribes criminal jurisdiction is constitutional

  1. Will Klopp says:

    Based on my recollection of history, I believe reservation land is sovereign to the Indians and think that the tribe can enforce laws on sovereign land as they see fit. If you don’t like it don’t go on the reservation.

    If Indians can’t police their own land and have to wait for a sheriff to OK it the “bad guys” could do grievous harm and escape the reservation before apprehension.

    Haven’t we taken enough away from the Native Americans?

  2. Arthur says:

    I think this is a very controversial law but it should have been instated. The Indian people deserve the right if the Sheriff does not respond to their calls. They need some kind of authority over their tribal area, and if the Sheriff is not willing to do it, than they should have the right to.

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  3. if the Sheriff is not willing to do it, than they should have the right to.

  4. I think this is a very controversial law. Based on my recollection of history, I believe reservation land is sovereign to the Indians

  5. Based on my recollection of history, I believe reservation land is sovereign to the Indians

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