Oklahoma AG Drops Appeal In State Death Penalty Case Seeking McGirt Reversal

Sep 3, 2021

Credit Joe Ravi / CC-BY-SA 3.0

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma Attorney General John O'Connor says he is dropping his appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court in the first-degree murder case of death row inmate Shaun Bosse.

A filing in the appeal asked the high court to find its July 2020 ruling in McGirt v. Oklahoma did not apply to criminal convictions before the decision or to overturn it completely. That ruling found the state had since statehood illegally prosecuted crimes involving Natives within the boundaries of tribal nations.

O'Connor said Friday that he made the decision after a state appellate court ruled the high court's decision in a landmark tribal sovereignty case does not apply retroactively. As a result of that ruling, Bosse's conviction and sentence were reinstated earlier this week.

Bosse, who is not Native American, was convicted in the 2010 killings of Katrina Griffin and her two young children, who were Native American, on land within the Chickasaw Nation’s historic reservation.

Oklahoma has nine other petitions pending before the U.S. Supreme Court asking for McGirt to be limited or overturned.