Tulsa Police Department becomes the 25th local law enforcement agency in Oklahoma to enter into an agreement with Cherokee Nation for mutual assistance.
TPD Deputy Chief Dennis Larsen said the arrangement is beneficial to both agencies.
"It just gives us firm legal standing that, if they ask for our help, we can assist them and vice versa," Larsen said. "If we're on a street that's touching their property, we could say, 'Hey, could you come out and help us?' like with a drunk driver. They can come out, and they're on firm legal grounds being there assisting us."
Cherokee Nation has had the same agreement on file with the state since 1992. TPD has had an identical arrangement with the Creeks for 10 years.
Larsen said that agreement has allowed officers to follow criminals onto Creek land and into casinos. That agreement and the one with the Cherokees also mean the agencies can enforce each others' laws, including traffic laws.
"They could stop you, write you a ticket, you'd still go to the same municipal court downtown that if you'd gotten a ticket at Fifth and Main," Larsen said. "And if you pay a fine, that money stays in the City of Tulsa's coffers."
Either party can end the agreement with a 30-day notice.