U.S. Attorney’s Office states commitment to solving crimes against Indigenous communities

Local News

A U.S. Department of Justice seal is displayed on a podium during a news conference. (Photo by Ramin Talaie/Getty Images)

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada issued a statement today in observance of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day.

The day, designated as May 5, 2021, was established by President Joe Biden’s proclamation, and “reaffirms our country’s commitment to solving missing and murdered Indigenous persons cases and addressing the underlying causes of these crimes, including sexual violence, violent crime, economic disparities, and substance use and addiction,” according to the statement.

“Native Americans, especially women and children, suffer from disproportionately high rates of violence, including domestic violence and sexual assault,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Christopher Chiou.

“Today, we reaffirm our commitment to finding the missing and seeking justice for the murdered. In partnership with the FBI, community organizations, and Tribal Nations, our district — one of the first in the country to recruit a Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons (MMIP) program coordinator — has made strides in addressing the lack of data, lack of coordination, and jurisdictional gaps that caused many cases to go unsolved,” Chiou said.

“Work remains to be done but, by working together, I believe we can end the MMIP crisis and bring some degree of peace to the families of missing and murdered Tribal victims,” he said.

If you or someone you know has information about missing or murdered Indigenous persons in Nevada, please contact the FBI Las Vegas Field Office by calling (702) 385-1281, or by visiting tips.fbi.gov. If you have questions about the U.S. Attorney’s Office MMIP program, please contact MMIP program coordinator Tom Ross by calling (775) 784-5438.

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