A letter from Sheriff Don Bell to the public, regarding PL280

To the Citizens of Lake County,

As you may be aware, we are on the eve of Lake County withdrawing its consent to bear the costs of PL280, a law which provides that the State, and therefore my Office, have jurisdiction over Tribal Members who commit felony crimes.  Because it has been widely publicized, I will not elaborate on the historical or ongoing political environment surrounding this issue.  It is my intent to inform the community that after Lake County withdraws its consent to participate in PL280, it does not divest my Office of my authority, or my obligation to ensure peace and order within our community.  This Office, and our Deputies will continue enforcing the law in the same manner we have under the PL280 arrangement for decades.  Following discussions with the Lake County Commissioners, it has been determined that we will begin tracking expenses and billing the state for these expenses related to enforcement under PL280.  I swore an oath to protect this community and want the community to know that withdrawal of consent from PL280 changes nothing in terms of the Sheriff’s Office response to crime and disorder in the county.


Donald R. Bell – Sheriff

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