District IX is located at the Department of Interior in Sacramento, California, and was established in 2012. Prior to 2012, issues facing tribal law enforcement in California, was handled through the BIA-OJS District III Office in Phoenix, AZ. However, with the positive progression of the California Tribes and their desire to implement their own police departments, and pursue Deputation Agreements which would allow tribal officers to be issued Special Law Enforcement Commissions (SLEC), it was decided there was a need for a new district. With this need being identified, BIA-OJS establish a new District office specifically for California, as they are in a unique, but an important part of Indian Country law enforcement.
California is home to 110 Federally recognized tribes. The California Attorney General’s office has led the way on working with California tribes with the creation of the California AG’s Office of Native American Affairs. The AG's office has always been supportive of the California Tribes and their desire to move forward with economic development, courts and law enforcement. The BIA-OJS and the AG's office have a seamless relationship when it comes to supporting the California Tribes.
This cooperative relationship has helped with the approval of CLETS (California Law Enforcement Telecommunication System) access for the Sycuan Tribal Police Department, whose officers hold SLEC’s. This historical step makes Sycuan TPD the first California Tribal Police Department who has had access to the CLETS System, which provides officers with critical and possibly life-saving information in the performance of their duties. This also establishes pathway for tribal police in California to be able to apply for access to the CLETS system. This achievement was possible through the cooperation and hard work of the California Attorney General’s Office, California Department of Justice, San Diego Sheriff’s Department, Sycuan Tribal Police Department and BIA-OJS.
District IX is staffed with a Special Agent in Charge, who is responsible for working with Federal State and Tribal partners. District IX Program Analyst is Persingula "Priscilla" Elk Shoulder who brings over 20 years of government service. She is a member of the Jemez Pueblo, New Mexico.