Muscogee Creek Nation Forms Commission To Better Handle Criminal Cases

Wednesday, July 29th 2020, 5:29 pm
By: Amelia Mugavero

The Muscogee Creek Nation wants a say in how the state handles the aftermath of the recent McGirt Supreme Court ruling.

The Creek Nation is the first tribe to form its own commission to make sure the tribe’s voices are heard, as just last week Governor Stitt formed his own commission to address the McGirt ruling.

The court’s decision will change the jurisdiction and how criminal cases are handled by tribes as well as state and federal prosecutors.

With the recent McGirt case, the Supreme Court affirmed the Creek Nation as a reservation.  Chief David Hill of the Muscogee Creek Nation doesn't deny the ruling has a significant impact.

"The Supreme Court decision created areas of legal clarity and that really opens the doors to implementing new framework," Chief Hill said. 

Hill said that's why the tribe created a Reservation Protection Commission, to ensure the Creek Nation is at the center of defining the ruling.

"It's a framework where we can both government to government have a sit down and just go through the finer details that has been laid out," Hill said. 

The commission will be made up of Creek Nation citizens to look at all areas of the McGirt Ruling, including its impact on law enforcement, public safety and violence against native women and murdered and missing indigenous women.

Last week, Governor Stitt formed a Commission on Cooperative Sovereignty to address the questions surrounding McGirt.

The governor said in a statement that he wants to work with the tribes "to ensure that we meet our shared economic, security and social goals."

However, Chief Hill said he formed his own commission to make sure the Creek Nation is better represented.

"I have to do what is best for my nation. This will work, it will work," Hill promised. 

Hill said other nations have expressed interest in forming commissions as well. The Reservation Protection Commission is effective immediately and will give its first report in 6 months.