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Bill Addresses Tribal Domestic Violence

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Dan Boren
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Congressman Boren at a town hall meeting

By AP

Oklahoma City, OK – Okla. congressman praises proposed law

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Rep. Dan Boren is praising President Obama's initiative to enact legislation that would increase protections against domestic violence on Native American tribal land.

The Justice Department has urged Congress to approve legislation to address the shortcomings of current laws that often allow non-Indian assailants to escape criminal investigations and prosecutions by tribal authorities when domestic violence is committed on tribal land.

In a news release on Friday, Boren said the proposed legislation was announced in anticipation of the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. The proposed law would recognize certain tribes' concurrent criminal jurisdiction to investigate, prosecute, convict and sentence Indian and non-Indians who commit domestic violence crimes.

Only the federal government can investigate and prosecute when a non-Indian assailant commits a crime against an Indian on tribal lands.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.