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Justices limit 2020 ruling on tribal lands in Oklahoma

Supreme Court
Posted at 11:02 AM, Jun 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-29 11:02:05-04

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has ruled that Oklahoma can prosecute non-Native Americans for crimes committed on tribal land when the victim is Native American.

The 5-4 decision on Wednesday cut back on the high court’s ruling from 2020 that said a large chunk of eastern Oklahoma remains an American Indian reservation.

That first decision left the state unable to prosecute Native Americans accused of crimes on tribal lands that include most of Tulsa, the state’s second-largest city with a population of about 413,000.

But the justices said Oklahoma can step in when the victims are tribal members and their accused assailant is not.

Justice Neil Gorsuch dissented. He was joined by the court's three liberal justices.