IN THE JUDICIAL APPEALS TRIBUNAL
OF THE CHEROKEE NATION
FEB 17 1998
IN THE MATTER OF THE )
DISTRICT COURT OF THE )No. JAT-AD-98-01
CHEROKEE NATION )
In May, 1997, District Judge Tina Jordan, without the consent or approval of the Judicial Appeals Tribunal, disregarded all rules, statutes and orders to the contrary, and removed her office and official District Court files from the Cherokee Nation Courthouse, located in downtown Tahlequah, Oklahoma (“Courthouse”) Judge Jordan was thereafter suspended by the Judicial Appeals Tribunal.
Tina Jordan then established an illegal court system within the executive branch of the Cherokee Nation. Tina Jordan and Associate District Judge DeWayne Littlejohn, acting under the direction of Judge Jordan since his appointment, have conducted numerous invalid hearings, and have also purported to perform various judicial acts, all of which are unauthorized. In addition, Tina Jordan and DeWayne Littlejohn have utilized the services of one or more individuals to act as Court Clerks, and have also illegally utilized funds appropriated for use by the legitimate judicial branch of the Cherokee Nation.
Because of the conduct of Tina Jordan and DeWayne Littlejohn, the Cherokee people have suffered irreparable injury, and the same conduct has created legal uncertainty as to the decisions they have rendered and the acts that they have performed. Because of this, their conduct has placed a cloud on the integrity and independence of the judicial system of the Cherokee people.
In order to prevent further injury to the Cherokee people and restore independence, as well as integrity and confidence in the judicial system of the Cherokee Nation, the Judicial Appeals Tribunal Orders and Directs as follows:
1. Judges Tina Jordan and DeWayne Littlejohn are hereby ORDERED and DIRECTED to return all property and records belonging to the judicial branch, that are currently within their control, to the COURTHOUSE on before the close of business on February 18, 1998. Judges Jordan and Littlejohn are further ORDERED and DIRECTED, after causing all the above property to returned to the COURTHOUSE, to immediately cease performing any and all judicial acts until further order of this Court. This includes, but is not limited to, holding hearing, trials, rendering decisions and issuing check requests to be drawn from the District Court funds. Failure to follow this Order will be grounds for CONTEMPT of Court.
2. All persons who are currently acting as Court Clerk or Deputy Court Clerk for the purported District Court, including Jerri Elliot and Lisa Hall, are hereby directed to assist in the transfer of records and other property currently being used for the illegal District Court, to the COURTHOUSE, and then refrain from performing any other acts normally performed by Court Clerks of the District Courts. Failure to follow this Order will be grounds for CONTEMPT of Court.
3. Donald Vaughn, Interim Controller, and Daniel C. “Dan” Howard, as Director of Accounting, and all employees of the accounting department of the Cherokee Nation, are ORDERED AND DIRECTED, from the date of this Order, not to accept, process and/or approve any request for any funds whatsoever by Tina Jordan and/or DeWayne Littlejohn, or anyone acting, or purporting to act, on their behalf and /or for their benefit. Furthermore, Donald Vaughn, Interim Controller, and Daniel C. “Dan” Howard, as Director, and all employees of the accounting department of the Cherokee Nation, are ORDERED AND DIRECTED, from the date of this Order, not to accept, process and/or approve any request for any funds whatsoever, from any party whomsoever, which will be, or may be, utilized by Tina Jordan, DeWayne Littlejohn and/or their purported Court Clerk or Clerks in maintaining their illegal court, or funding or paying any compensation and/or expense relating to the illegal court system in operation of the Cherokee Nation Complex. Failure to follow this Order will be grounds for CONTEMPT of Court.
4. Lisa Fields, Court Clerk, and/or Gina Waits, Deputy Court Clerk, are ORDERED AND DIRECTED to post at least one certified copy of this Order, in its entirely, in at least one or more conspicuous places in the Cherokee Nation Courthouse in downtown Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Lisa Fields, Court Clerk, and/or Gina Waits, Deputy Court Clerk, are further ORDERED AND DIRECTED to notify the members of the Cherokee nation Bar Association of this Order, by mailing, without delay, certified copies of this Order to all members of the Cherokee Nation Bar Association, that the Court system operated by Tina Jordan and DeWayne Littlejohn is illegal, and all complaints (petitions), motions, briefs and other District Court documents are to be filed exclusively with Lisa Fields and/or Gina Waits at the Cherokee Nation Courthouse in downtown Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Furthermore, all members of the Cherokee Nation Bar Association are informed that all pending cases in the District Court of the Cherokee Nation are assigned to District Judge Drew Wilcoxen for adjudication and disposition until further Order of this Court.
In order to provide notice to those parties directly affected by this Order, Lisa Fields, Court Clerk, and/or Gina Waits, Deputy Court Clerk, are specially appointed, and are ORDERED AND DIRECTED, to serve personally, or to cause to be served personally, a certified copy of this Order upon Tina Jordan, DeWayne Littlejohn, Drew Wilcoxen, Daniel C.”Dan” Howard and Donald Vaughn, as well as Jerri Elliott and Lisa Hall, purported Court Clerks for Tina Jordan and DeWayne Littlejohn, or upon some member of their household or office, who is fifteen years of age, or older.
THIS ORDER, IN ITS ENTIRELY, SHALL REMAIN IN FULL FORCE AND EFFECT UNTIL FURTHER ORDER OF THIS COURT. IT IS SO ORDERED, on this 17th day of February, 1998
/S/ Ralph F. Keen,
Chief Justice of the Cherokee Nation