Wyoming County Opposes High Court Review of Border Case
RIVERTON, Wyo. (AP) — The Fremont County Attorney's Office has filed legal arguments opposing a potential review by the U.S. Supreme Court of a lawsuit over the Wind River Indian Reservation boundary in Wyoming.
A legal brief filed Friday by the county's chief civil deputy, Jodi Darrough, argues the case should end with a February 2017 decision by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled that Riverton and other areas north of the Wind River do not lie within the reservation.
Darrough said the issue has "been examined thoroughly throughout the last century."
The dispute centers on whether a 1905 agreement between the Eastern Shoshone and Arapaho tribes and federal government to allow sale of reservation land to non-Indians actually changed the reservation boundaries.
Darrough's brief is written on behalf of both the county and the city of Riverton.
Even before the 10th Circuit decision, Darrough argued, questions about whether Riverton is part of the reservation had long been settled by numerous cases before the Wyoming Supreme Court.
In requesting a U.S. Supreme Court review of the case, the tribes largely aim to convince the court's nine justices that the 10th Circuit's ruling conflicts with precedents by other circuit courts and conflicts with a previous Supreme Court decision.
Such legal conflicts are the most common reason the Supreme Court usually chooses to take up a case.
However, the county's legal brief argues that the Wyoming case is different from other cases because the 1905 act concerning Riverton specified that the tribes would "cede" and "relinquish" the land sold to non-Indians.