Tribes Concerned About Lack of Communication during Standoff

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Updated: 1/18/2013 6:49 pm
 

You might think the cooperation between multiple agencies to prevent the public from a dangerous situation would be applauded but not everyone is happy about the way things were handled Wednesday afternoon.

Before the standoff had even ended, Mary Washakie of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes sent an email to the media expressing the tribes concern but at least two local sheriffs are saying there is nothing to worry about.

“We have a great relationship right now and before I even go to this meeting, I was talking to him at the scene and we’re getting along just great and I really appreciate Fort Hall for helping us out,” said Bingham County Sheriff Craig Rowland. “

“I agree 100 percent,” said Bannock County Sheriff Lorin Nielsen. “They had officers watching, securing one of these scenes all night long. Their officers were out there with us.”

In an email sent to the media, a spokesperson for the tribes paints a different picture.

“The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes are deeply concerned about the lack of notification because state laws do not apply to the reservation unless congress has so provided and exclusively is tribal and federal jurisdiction.”

According to Sheriff Nielsen, the rift isn’t between the local law enforcement agencies; it has more to do with the way the tribes are governed.

“We have a job to do and they have a job to do and we can’t do it without helping each other,” said Nielsen.  “I feel very, very comfortable in saying, as far as working with the law enforcement side of Fort Hall; we have not had any major issues in that line. Now, when you take it up to the commissioners and the council, that’s a different thing and I think that’s the nature because of their form of government and our form of government and the conflict that comes out.”

This is the email sent to a KPVI Producer:

MEDIA ALERT

Fort Hall- The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes Department of Public Safety activated the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at 1:49PM today.  Through radio transmission the Fort Hall Police Department learned that Bannock County Sheriff officers escorted a non-native individual onto the Fort Hall Indian Reservation without formally notifying the Fort Hall Police or FBI. The suspect is believed to be linked in connection to the missing Pocatello female, Angelea Schultz.  Further investigation by the Bannock County Sheriff officers with the suspect led them into a standoff situation within the confines of the Fort Hall Indian Reservation off HWY 91 on Reservation road. The suspect was later found to be armed with a pistol.

According to Fort Hall Police they were not notified by the Bannock County Sheriff’s office upon entering onto the reservation at around 12:15PM following the suspect driving his own red pickup truck.  The following tribal, county and state agencies are on-scene: Fort Hall Police, Fort Hall Fire & EMS, Idaho State Police, Power County Police, Oneida County Police, Franklin County Police and Bingham County Police.  

The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes are deeply concerned about the lack of notification because state laws do not apply to the reservation unless congress has so provided and exclusively is tribal and federal jurisdiction.

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