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Grand Jury Indicts Man At Center Of Landmark Tribal Sovereignty Ruling

Oklahoma Department of Corrections

A Seminole Nation citizen who was the plaintiff behind the historic Supreme Court decision McGirt v. Oklahoma has been indicted in federal court.

71-year-old Jimcy McGirt faces three counts of aggravated sexual abuse. His case will now be taken up in Federal Court after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this summer that the state lacked jurisdiction to try his case because his crime was committed on the Muscogee (Creek) Reservation.

Only the federal government has the ability to try Native Americans when the crime occurs on Indian land.

McGirt is due in Muskogee federal court on October 6th.

U.S. Attorney Brian Kuester also announced on Monday that Patrick Dewayne Murphy was indicted for murder and kidnapping. Murphy was involved in a case that also sought a legal ruling on tribal jurisdiction. It was first heard by the Supreme Court in its 2018-2019 term, but was laid over after Justice Neil Gorsuch recused himself due to having participated in a lower court hearing of the case.

Allison Herrera is a radio and print journalist who's worked for PRX's The World, Colorado Public Radio as the climate and environment editor and as a freelance reporter for High Country News’ Indigenous Affairs desk.
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