WSJ: Hualapai judge confronts unique challenges

The Wall Street Journal follows Joseph Thomas Flies-Away, a judge for the Hualapai Tribe of Arizona, and documents some of the challenges he faces.

Flies-Away's court calendar is full, the paper says. Though the tribe has just 2,300 members, the court handles about 1,000 criminal cases a year.

Flies-Away says most of the cases are repeat offenders. The Indian Civil Rights Act limits punishment to one year in jail and $5,000 in fines.

Even when Flies-Away sends criminals to jail, the Bureau of Indian Affairs can release offenders early due to overcrowding at the facility on the reservation. "It's tough to have a good justice system without good detention," the judge tells the paper.

The Journal has written articles about ICRA, tribal sovereign immunity and violent crime in Indian Country.

Get the Story:
U.S. Indian Tribal Judges Grapple With Legal Limits (The Wall Street Journal 12/12)

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