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US Supreme Court to decide Native American land dispute in Oklahoma

02:35  14 december  2019
02:35  14 december  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

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The Supreme Court agreed on Friday to decide whether much of eastern Oklahoma is an Indian reservation, a question that could have enormous consequences for the area’s 1.8 million residents in matters of criminal justice and commerce.

Land loss for Native Americans is framed as a historic phenomenon, but for tribes in Oklahoma , it never stopped. Through allotment, the Cherokee Nation lost 74 percent of our treaty territory. Today, we still lose land every time an acre is sold to a non-Indian, inherited by someone less than half blood

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court agreed for the second time Friday to decide whether much of Oklahoma remains Native American territory, a ruling that could plunge the state into what it has called "civil, criminal and regulatory turmoil."

Neil Gorsuch wearing a suit and tie: Supreme Court Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch did not participate in last term's case on Oklahoma's Indian land dispute, so another case will be heard this term.© Sait Serkan Gurbuz, AP Supreme Court Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch did not participate in last term's case on Oklahoma's Indian land dispute, so another case will be heard this term.

The justices will hear an appeal from Jimcy McGirt, a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, who claims his state rape conviction from 1997 should be overturned because of the jurisdictional dispute.

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The Supreme Court must decide the fate of a murderer—and whether roughly half of Oklahoma is rightfully reservation land .

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court considered on Tuesday whether much of eastern Oklahoma is an Indian reservation, a question that could have enormous “There are 2,000 prisoners in state court who committed a crime in the former Indian Territory who self-identify as Native American ,” she said.

His case is similar to one the high court heard last term but failed to decide – presumably because the justices were deadlocked, 4-4, without Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch's participation. Gorsuch came from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit and likely was involved with the earlier case there.

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When the first case was heard, the justices reached back to 1907 to determine whether Congress, using imprecise language, failed to disestablish the 1866 boundaries of the Indian reservation. If so, virtually half of Oklahoma – home to 1.8 million residents and including Tulsa, its second-largest city – would remain Native American territory and subject to federal, not state, laws.

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OKLAHOMA CITY - A ruling on an Oklahoma case heard by the nation 's highest court this week "First, Congress destroyed all features of a reservation by terminating all sovereignty over the land in the According to Eakins, this large portion of eastern Oklahoma in question was granted to Native

Supreme Court weighs fate of convicted killer, tribal reservation borders. When Patrick Murphy mutilated and murdered his girlfriend’s former lover in eastern Oklahoma in 1999, state On Tuesday the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the dispute . The justices will ultimately decide whether historical

The 10th Circuit had ruled the state lacked jurisdiction to prosecute the gruesome murder because it happened within 3 million acres belonging to the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. In all, that threatened more than 19 million acres in eastern Oklahoma once inhabited by five Indian tribes.

Oklahoma told the court "that cannot be right," since it "would plunge eastern Oklahoma into civil, criminal and regulatory turmoil and overturn 111 years of Oklahoma history."

The Trump administration took the state's side, telling the justices that Congress long ago broke up the Creek Nation's lands, abolished its courts and set a timetable for the tribe's dissolution.

Ten states, from Maine to Texas to Montana, warned that the boundaries of tribal lands have jurisdictional consequences there as well. They said a decision in the tribe's favor "would be confusing and costly at best, and disastrous at worst," affecting health and energy policy, environmental regulation, economic development and taxes.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Supreme Court to decide Native American land dispute in Oklahoma

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