New report details federal prosecutions of violent crime in Indian Country

May 31, 2013

The Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010 requires record-keeping of federal agencies’ activities with violent crime occurring in Indian Land. In compliance with the law, the Department of Justice has released a report detailing investigations and prosecutions of violent crimes in tribal communities for 2011 and 2012.

The report says federal efforts to prioritize criminal investigations and prosecutions in Indian Country have led to a 54% increase in that caseload.

That number only covers those Indian Country offenses reported to the FBI and Federal prosecutors, not the majority of crimes in tribal communities, which go through the tribal justice system. In Wyoming, the U.S. Attorney’s Office resolved more than 100 Indian Country matters in 2011 and 2012 combined, and declined to take up 38 cases during the same time.

Nationwide, cases were most often declined for insufficient evidence and referral to another prosecuting authority, according to the report. It also emphasized the DOJ’s efforts to strengthen relationships with tribes, improve information sharing, and collaboration with tribal law enforcement.

You can find the full report here: