GREAT FALLS — A Blackfeet Indian attorney says 200 years of tribal law will be upended if the U.S. government is allowed to prosecute a tribal leader for a victimless crime on the reservation.
Attorney Joe McKay says the tribe has exclusive jurisdiction over such crimes involving Indians.
Tribal council member and state Sen. Shannon Augare is charged with fleeing a Glacier County sheriff's deputy during a traffic stop on the reservation in May.
Federal prosecutors charged Augare with drunken driving, reckless driving and obstruction of a peace officer after the Blackfeet's chief prosecutor referred the case to the U.S. attorney's office.
McKay asked U.S. Magistrate Judge Keith Strong to dismiss the charges during a hearing Thursday.
Strong says he will make a ruling on the request by the end of next week.