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Published July 26, 2013, 05:48 PM

Lawmakers react to latest child safety case on Spirit Lake Nation

Members of North Dakota Congressional delegation say they're concerned about child safety at Spirit Lake. Reservation child protection services have been under strict scrutiny for over a year now following repeated child abuse cases and deaths.

By: Cynthia Johnson, WDAZ

Members of North Dakota Congressional delegation say they're concerned about child safety at Spirit Lake. Reservation child protection services have been under strict scrutiny for over a year now following repeated child abuse cases and deaths.

Lawmakers say accountability is everything when it comes to safety of children and adults on the reservation. This shooting is the most recent in a string of child safety cases. On June 13th, the FBI started its investigation on the death of a 2-year-old on the reservation. The child's step grandmother is charged with criminal neglect and child abuse. Representatives say it's hard to intervene on behalf of children on the reservation because it's a sovereign nation. Lawmakers say they're working to get the Bureau of Indian Affairs to take over all tribal social services. Senator John Hoeven says he is making plans to visit the reservation.

Hoeven: "Right now tribal council needs to get the court to make a determination on the chairman position and we've got to continue to take these steps to make sure children are safe on the reservation."

Representative Kevin Cramer says he thinks it's too early in the investigation to comment. Senator Heidi Heitkamp says she will be closely monitoring developments in the case.

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