Legal Guidance on Detention of Non-Indian Criminal Suspects

Download(PDF): Signed Memo Guidance on Legal Authority

The BIA Office of Tribal Justice issued guidance on legal authority of Tribal law enforcement to detain non-Indian offenders in Indian Country. It clarifies that if a non-Indian commits a crime in Indian country, tribal police have the authority to detain and put them in BIA detention facilities, until the status of tribal jurisdiction can be determined.  If the tribe does not have criminal jurisdiction, they can be held until transferred to a federal or state prosecuting authority.

About Sarah M Donnelly

Program Coordinator for the Indigenous Law and Policy Center at Michigan State University College of Law.
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