The United States Supreme Court on Wednesday reversed a lower court ruling from 2021, instead deciding that Oklahoma can prosecute non-Native Oklahomans who commit crimes against tribal members on tribal land.

The court’s decision overturns a previous ruling by the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals that vacated the Tulsa County conviction of Victor Manuel Castro-Huerta.

Castro-Huerta, a non-Native American, was convicted in 2017 of child neglect after his 5-year-old stepdaughter, who is Native American, was found in terrible conditions. 

On this episode of Listen Frontier, I speak about the decision with KOSU Indigenous Affairs reporter Allison Herrera, as well as Ryan Leonard, who serves as Special Counsel for Native American Affairs to Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt.

This is Listen Frontier, a podcast exploring the investigative journalism of the Frontier and featuring conversations with those on the frontlines of Oklahoma’s most important stories. Listen to us Apple PodcastsSpotify, and Stitcher. 

To donate to The Frontier and help support our efforts to grow investigative journalism in Oklahoma, click here.