Saturday, June 14, 2008

Feds Warn Soboba That it COULD be Forced to Close; VIOLENCE

This is a problem with sovereignty that should be addressed. What happens when THEIR sovereignty interferes with OUR rights to safety?

The federal agency that regulates Indian casinos warned the Soboba tribe recently that it could be forced to close its casino if violence on the reservation endangers people there.
Phil Hogen, chairman of the National Indian Gaming Commission, confirmed Friday that he and his staff have been talking to the Soboba Band of LuiseƱo Indians in the wake of two law enforcement shootouts on the reservation that left three tribal members dead. (OP: Criminal Tribal Members were shooting weapons, threatening San Jacinto and sheriff's deputies. Deputies defended themselves and citizens of Riverside County from the threat of Soboba Tribal Members)
"We said, 'Hey, we've heard there's been some violence there in the vicinity of the gaming facility,' " Hogen said in a telephone interview. "If it looks like it's going to put life and limb at risk ... closure of the facility might be necessary."
Hogen stressed that the casino is not currently in danger of being closed, and the commission hasn't issued any citations or penalties in connection with the shootouts last month. The commission informed the tribe of the "worst-case scenario," he said. (How worse does it have to get, better tribal marksman?)
The commission has the ability to shut down an Indian casino for safety reasons, but Hogen said it has probably done so only a few times in its 20 years in existence.
Hogen didn't recall any cases similar to the Soboba situation, and he said most of the safety concerns at other casinos have involved building issues, such as inadequate fire protection.
Hogen and staff members from the commission's Temecula office have been communicating with the tribe in the wake of the shootouts, he said.
The commission asked the tribe to clarify a number of issues, including a policy that firefighters and paramedics be escorted by law enforcement when they respond to calls on the reservation, Hogen said.
Cal Fire, which responds to fire calls on the Soboba Reservation, reversed that policy at 8 a.m. Friday and now allows firefighters to respond immediately, said Capt. Fernando Herrera.
"Things have changed, and there have been no incidents for weeks," Herrera said Friday. (yeah, 3 WHOLE weeks!) HERE is the story


Anonymous said...

I have heard that the tribe quit paying the law enforcement/fire dept for servicing the reservation? Why would they do that? Does the reservation have adequate law enforcement/fire dept.? If that is true (not paying for services), it is very wrong. Hatred is never right. This type of behavior will set back the tribe much worse than before their financial gains through gaming. We Native Americans must remember our proud heritage and not bend to hatred and lower our status of human kind.

OPechanga said...

Chairman Salgado stated that they didn't think they were getting the value for the spend, so they cancelled the contract.

Anonymous said...

Salgado was not happy with the service because many of the tribal members were getting arrested for drugs and possession of stolen vehicles/ weapons. Many of these members are related to Salgado and other head tribal counsel. The arrests were hitting to close to home. If you want to clean up the reservation, you must allow the lawbreakers to learn their lesson and not protect them for wrong doing. You have respect society if you want to be respected. Why is it okay to steal cars from innocent victims and drive them to the reservation where you are safe? Why is it okay to shoot at police officers with high powered rifles? I strongly discourage anyone from going to their casino until they become more responcible. There are many other options in the local area. I pray no one else gets hurt or dies.