Where the federal government failed, the Muscogee (Creek) Nation will not, according to Principal Chief David Hill.
“Our attorney general’s office has announced that they will pursue (Leroy Jemol) Smith to bring him to justice for his crimes,” Hill said. Smith is accused of raping at least five women in Muskogee in the 1990s, and also was accused of killing two people in Tulsa. Smith’s state criminal case was dismissed because he is part Native, and the state had no jurisdiction to prosecute him. Last week, a federal judge dismissed his case because the statute of limitations had expired on the rapes.
That release “is the result of legal and policy failures at the state and federal level that must be addressed to ensure injustices like this do not continue,” Hill said. “We have been presented with an opportunity to discard the problematic policies of the past and put in place new programs and protocols, with collaboration between federal, state, and tribal governmental partners, to ensure men like Leroy Smith are prosecuted for the crimes they commit.”
Smith was released from the Muskogee County Jail last week after his federal case was dismissed. There is no word on when the Creek Nation will issue a warrant for his arrest.