Cherokee Indian Nation

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The Cherokee people were one of the first Native Tribes to acquire a written language and as such they have also been progressive in their approach towards government and the system of justice. Since the early 19th century, the Cherokee have had a constitution, Supreme Court, and a system of government based on European ideas.


The constitution, the comprehensive legal code, and the many governmental related services of the Cherokee Nation contribute to a justice system that operates autonomously to promote order and advancement within the boundaries of the Cherokee Nation.
Though the Cherokee Nation is a sovereign entity with a complete legal system, they also work with the cooperation of federal agencies such as the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to maintain order. They also have agreements with local and state governments to help insure consistency and support within both the Cherokee Nation and local governments. Indeed, there has been an ongoing policy of the US government to help insure that Cherokee law and Federal laws have a measure of conformity (Distinctive Features). However, the recent limits placed on the State Police on Indian lands has prompted the Cherokee Nation to take a greater responsibility for law enforcement within their borders and has necessitated the formation of the Cherokee Nation Marshall Service.
In 1986, a ruling by the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that "[...] Oklahoma law enforcement officers have no criminal jurisdiction "in Indian country" unless the crime ...
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