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Oklahoma court adds tribe to those covered by McGirt ruling

October 22, 2021 GMT

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Quapaw Nation in Oklahoma is the sixth tribe included in those covered by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that said the state has no jurisdiction over crimes committed on tribal reservations by or against tribal citizens.

The dismissal of a charge of committing lewd or indecent acts with a child younger than 16 against Jeremy Lawhorn, 39, in Ottawa County was upheld Thursday by the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals.

The court cited what is known as the McGirt decision, in which the Supreme Court found Congress never disestablished the Muscogee reservation.

“The district attorney informed the district court that he and the attorney general’s office conducted ‘extensive research’ and found no evidence that Congress disestablished the Quapaw Nation Reservation,” according to the state appeals court ruling by Presiding Judge Scott Rowland.

Lawhorn is a member of the Quapaw Nation and the crime occurred on the tribe’s reservation, the court found in upholding the dismissal of the charge.

The Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw and Seminole nations were previously included with the Muscogee Nation under McGirt.