Supreme Court Hears Oklahoma, Cherokee Arguments

The state seeks to prosecute non-natives for crimes on native land.

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Wednesday for the case of Oklahoma v. Castro-Huerta. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt, the one who appealed the case to the Supreme Court, believes that the state should be allowed to prosecute crimes against Native Americans on Native American land. Victor Castro-Huerta was charged with child neglect on Cherokee land, and crimes committed against Native Americans on Native American land are prosecuted by the federal government, not the state government.

The Oklahoma governor appealed the state court ruling that it was an overreach of authority for the state to prosecute Castro-Huerta. “Oklahoma has been robbed of the authority to prosecute crimes,” Governor Stitt said during his State of the State speech in February. However, the Cherokee Nation supports Native Nation sovereignty and is looking for the Supreme Court to rule in favor of Castro-Huerta. 

As the Lord Leads, Pray with Us…

  • For wisdom for the Supreme Court justices as they consider the case regarding Native American legal jurisdiction.
  • For Governor Stitt and his administration as they seek to enforce Oklahoma state laws.
  • For Native American leaders and the federal law enforcement officials who have been given legal jurisdiction.

Sources: AP, Reuters


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