The NHBP Tribal Police Department holds the responsibility of serving, protecting and providing professional law enforcement for the NHBP Community and the Village of Athens.
Hunter Safety Program
Provides novice hunters with training to follow safe hunting practices and knowledge in Department of Natural Resources and Tribal Hunting Codes. This training is generally offered at least once a year, sometimes twice, depending on demand. This class is open to NHBP Tribal Members, employees and students in the Athens School District.
NHBP has two evidence technicians who are assigned to a county-wide evidence response team. These members are specially trained in the collection, retention, and preservation of evidence for all manner of crimes. Evidence is collected and either stored for court proceedings or submitted for analysis at the Michigan State Police Crime Lab in Lansing. These officers are utilized only as needed.
All officers of the NHBP Tribal Police Department are Crisis Intervention Trained (CIT). This training is vital to resolving police-public interactions with subjects who may be undergoing a mental crisis. These officers are specially trained in how to interact with subjects and determine the best steps toward resolving a critical incident.
NHBP is currently reaffirming treaty rights with the State of Michigan. Part of that process is the establishment of conservation efforts for the NHBP reservation and surrounding areas. These efforts not only include area wildlife but also water and plant life. NHBP has several officers who have received specialized training to ensure that the natural resources in and around the Pine Creek Reservation and watershed are protected and preserved. NHBP officers work closely with the Environmental Department to determine the best methods for resource management. Conservation officers also provide hunter safety training for tribal members and students within the Athens School District. Other programs may also be developed as other interests are discovered.
If you have any questions about the NHBP Conservation efforts, please contact Sgt. Ryan Pedley at: 269.270.8414.
Cross-Deputization/Special Law Enforcement Credentials
Officers are sworn to enforce tribal laws on fee/trust lands by the sovereign authority of the Nottawaseppi Huron Potawatomi Constitution. Additionally, all officers are cross-deputized from both the Calhoun County and Branch County Sheriff Departments. This permits NHBP officers to enforce Michigan State laws on non-tribal affiliated subjects. Furthermore, all NHBP officers also received specialized training from the Bureau of Indian Affairs and possess Special Law Enforcement Credentials (SLEC) which permits tribal officers to enforce federal law through the United States Attorney’s Office Western District. Determining the proper jurisdiction is vital to demonstrate tribal sovereignty and ensure the safety of NHBP tribal membership, employees, and the more than 2 million annual visitors to FireKeeper’s Casino and Hotel.
Fusion Center Liaison
The NHBP Tribal Police has one member currently assigned as a liaison with the Battle Creek Police Department’s Fusion Center. The Fusion Center houses members from not only area police agencies, but also Juvenile Probation, Michigan Department of Corrections, Safe Place (Woman’s Shelter), and Child and Adult Protective Services to act as an information clearinghouse. These partners collaborate on issues to determine the best approach and method for resolving them. An example would be a troubled juvenile who has frequent contact with an SRO. Multiple shareholders will meet and discuss determining the best course of action for a positive and lasting solution. NHBP members reside in other jurisdictions and have a presence at the Center, which aids by offering guidance and support when other agencies encounter the unique aspects of tribal culture and law enforcement. Additionally, area law enforcement information is shared so that potential situations can be mitigated with the best use of resources. The liaison meets with the Fusion Center once per week.
If you have any questions about the Fusion Center Liaison, please contact Sgt. Chris Mandoka at: 269.986.9879.
School Resource Officer (SRO)
NHBP maintains a grant-funded position with the Athens School District for a School Resource Officer (SRO). The SRO is tasked with the safety and crime prevention efforts with the school district. They work closely with school administrators, staff, and parents to resolve issues such as school violence, cyber-bullying, drug possession, and truancy. They receive specialized training in dealing with school/student-based issues. The overall goal is not one based on enforcement, but on a community policing approach to create a safe learning environment and provide services to students in need.
If you have any questions about the SRO position, please contact Sgt. Frank Rugg at: 269.832.7912.
Special Response Team (SRT)
NHBP Tribal Police currently has two officers assigned to a county-wide Special Response Team (SRT). This team utilized specialized training and equipment to respond to barricade subjects, high-risk and dangerous search warrants, active shooter, and/or mass causality incidents. Officers receive additional team-based training monthly to ensure that any incidents that occur within the jurisdiction of NHBP can be responded to in the most appropriate manner.
Task Force Officer (TFO)
NHBP recognizes that addiction disproportionally impacts marginalized communities, especially among American Indians and Alaskan Natives. NHBP has assigned one officer to represent tribal law enforcement with drug enforcement, addiction mitigation, and diversion programs. They also work with the DEA Diversion Program to counter the nationwide impact of prescription drug abuse. NHBP is currently the only tribal law enforcement agency with a TFO. The Task Force Officer (TFO) works with Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Special Agents in southwest Michigan including Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids. This position is in addition to other duties of a tribal police officer. The desired goal is to ensure tribal representation in efforts to combat addiction. Additionally, NHBP Tribal Police has collaborated with the Calhoun County Jail to ensure that when those with tribal affiliation are housed, NHBP officers are notified to determine if any assistance can be provided including additional victim services, mental health assistance, or other social service resources.
If you have any questions about the DEA Task Force Officer, please contact Officer Travon Dufraine at: 269.243.2866.
Unmanned Aerial Systems Team
Tribal Police have joined with law enforcement partners utilizing small unmanned aerial system technology. The use of small, unarmed aerial systems augments the capability of area police for such events as lost children, individuals who have walked away from adult foster care facilities, or other events as needed. Their use can also prevent officers from exposing themselves to unnecessary danger such as searching for an armed subject in a wooded area. These officers train regularly with area officers and are used only as needed.
If you have any questions about the Unmanned Aerial Systems Team, please contact Lt. Chris Allen at: 269.491.6528.
Sex Offender Registration
NHBP has enacted a Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, in compliance with Title I of Public Law 109-248. The NHBP Code provides that all individuals who reside within the exterior boundaries of the Pine Creek Indian Reservation or otherwise reside on property owned by the Tribe, in fee or trust, regardless of location, or are employed within the exterior boundaries of the Reservation or on property owned by the Tribe, in fee or trust, regardless of location, or who attend school within the exterior boundaries of the Reservation or on property owned by the Tribe, in fee or trust, regardless of location that have been convicted of a sex offense, are subject to this code and are required to register with the Tribal Police.
Citizen Complaint Form
Please print all information clearly and legibly on the spaces provided so the department’s investigation into your allegations can proceed as quickly as possible. If you need assistance in completing this form, please contact a Police Supervisor.
You will be contacted at a later time with regard to your complaint and the status of the investigation.