WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court on May 26 granted Oklahoma’s request for a stay of a state appeals court’s reversal of a man’s murder conviction for the slaying of a Native American woman and her two young children until a planned petition for a writ of certiorari by the state can be decided by the high court.
TACOMA, Wash. — An environmental review is not required under Washington law for the exchange of land between the state and a private timber company, and the land swap does not affect the treaty rights of any Indian tribe, a state appeals court held May 24 in affirming denial of a tribe’s challenge to the exchange and declining three other tribes’ bid to dismiss the appeal.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Supreme Court review is not warranted for an Indian woman’s request for certiorari on whether the high court’s reservation boundary and criminal jurisdiction rulings in McGirt v. Oklahoma apply to her arrests on a Michigan reservation by county police because she failed to press the argument in the lower courts, the county parties say in their May 14 brief in opposition to her petition.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A District of Columbia federal judge on May 21 declined Indian tribes’ request to shut down the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and blamed the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which the court previously found had “acted unlawfully” in approving a pipeline easement near the tribes’ land, for “ducking the controversy” since the easement was vacated nearly a year ago.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A New York Indian tribe offers “no sound reason” that the U.S. Supreme Court should not review and reverse a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals’ ruling that the tribe’s sovereign immunity shields it from a county’s attempt to foreclose on the tribe’s land for unpaid property taxes, the county says in a May 18 reply brief in support of its petition for certiorari.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A federal court correctly dismissed an Indian tribe’s suit seeking official recognition from the federal government because the tribe failed to exhaust its administrative remedies with the Department of the Interior (DOI), the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals decided May 18 in affirming.
SPOKANE, Wash. — Recreational vehicle owners who were evicted from their lakeside camping spots on Indian land now must pay the tribal landowners more than $1.4 million in trespass damages for using the land for the last 10 years without a lease, a Washington federal judge determined May 17 after a bench trial.
CINCINNATI — A group of Native American tribes does not have a reservation in Michigan under an 1855 treaty with the United States because the land that was set aside for the group consisted of many separate allotments for individual tribal members, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held May 18 in affirming summary judgment for Michigan’s governor.
MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Pharmacy defendants on May 7 asked an Oklahoma federal judge to certify for interlocutory appeal his decisions that a Native American tribe can pursue its opioid claims against the defendants for alleged violations of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).
BILLINGS, Mont. — Montana Native American tribes and tribal organizations sued the state May 17 seeking to nullify two recently enacted laws that they say are designed to make it more difficult for Indians to vote.
FRESNO, Calif. — A California appeals court on May 13 again ruled in favor of a longtime opponent of Indian casinos in the state, putting in jeopardy the groundbreaking for a $400 million casino proposal that a tribe and the U.S. government have been defending in both state and federal courts for nearly a decade.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court on May 17 denied certiorari for a membership dispute at a Florida church involving the constitutionality of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (FACE Act) and the scope of Native American tribal sovereign immunity from civil litigation.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Federal prosecutors have secured grand jury indictments in Oklahoma charging 11 defendants with murder and other violent crimes after their cases were reversed or dismissed based on last year’s landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in McGirt v. Oklahoma, the U.S. Department of Justice announced May 14.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Federal law still requires that Indian tribes must have been in existence before the United States was established to be entitled to tribal sovereign immunity today, and a Native American tribe operating a casino in San Diego cannot meet that requirement, challengers to the casino tell the U.S. Supreme Court in their April 21 petition for certiorari.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — When the United States acquired land in trust for a California Indian tribe so the tribe could enter into the gaming business, the tribe took over jurisdiction for the land for purposes of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) without trampling on the state’s sovereignty, the federal government argues in a May 12 response brief filed at the request of the U.S. Supreme Court.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A designated federal judge in New Mexico on May 11 dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction civil rights claims against a Native American school district and its superintendent filed by a woman who says she was improperly removed from an elementary school’s Indian Education Committee (IEC).
NEW ORLEANS — The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 7 affirmed the conviction and one-year prison sentence of a Texas man who dumped red paint on a statue of an Indian woman to protest the celebration of indigenous people instead of Columbus Day.
ST. PAUL, Minn. — County attorneys and sheriffs in Minnesota are not employees of the state under its tort claims law, a state appeals court held May 10 in affirming dismissal of indemnification claims of a county attorney and sheriff for a lawsuit filed by an Indian tribe over law enforcement jurisdiction on its reservation.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The District of Columbia federal appeals court on May 10 denied a petition to rehear a panel’s March 19 decision and to certify to the Oregon Supreme Court the question of whether a federal court cannot invalidate a protocol between a federal government and a Native American tribe to take decisions about the tribe’s water rights away from Oregon state officials and give that authority to the federal government.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A woman suing for the second time over the 2015 seizure and forfeiture of her truck by tribal police over drug charges says in an April 26 petition for a writ of certiorari that the U.S. Supreme Court needs to review the lower courts’ rulings on issue preclusion to prevent further injustice.