Arizona Has Numerous City Law Enforcement Agencies

Interviewer: How many different law enforcement agencies are there and what are they called and where do they send their case?

Small Towns That Do Not Employ a Police Force Pay the Sheriff’s Office for Law Enforcement Services

Mike Munoz: There are many law enforcement agencies. Every city has its own law enforcement agency. Only a few small townships don’t have their law enforcement, and if they don’t, then what they do is they have to pay a fee to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office to be the law enforcement agency.

DPS Handles Freeways and Major Intersections and Each County Has Its Own Sheriff’s Department

For example, the town of Guadalupe does not have their own police agency so they pay the Sheriff’s Office to do their law enforcement. In addition to the city agencies, you also have the Department of Public Safety, which they handle Highway Patrol, freeways, they do all major interstates as well.

Then you have the Sheriff’s Office. Each county has its own Sheriff’s office. The most populated county in Arizona is Maricopa County and the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office has jurisdiction over the entire county.

There Are Numerous Federal Agencies and Indian Reservation Law Enforcement in Arizona

Interviewer: Are there any other agencies that could pull someone over and cite them or arrest them?

Mike Munoz: There are numerous different federal agencies. You have FBI, and in Arizona we have many large Native American Indian Reservations that are in the middle of the city and they have their own police forces. If you are driving through Indian Reservation land, Native American land, then you can be stopped by reservation law enforcement as well.

Cases That Originate on Reservation Land Can Be Sent to Tribal Court or Justice Court

Interviewer: If you are stopped on the reservation, where will you be sent, cited, or arrested, or taken?

Mike Munoz: In Arizona it’s very common that some of the freeways or even some of the roads might be on reservation land. Some of those cases get sent to Justice Courts. This is because some of the Justice precincts overlap and sometimes you might be dealing with a Tribal Court. Most likely you get sent to a Justice Court.

Individuals in Tribal Court Can Be Represented by Attorneys or Counselors That Are Not Licensed Attorneys

Interviewer: Are you able to represent people if they’re asked to appear in Tribal Court?

Mike Munoz: Yes, attorneys can appear in Tribal Court. Tribal Court’s a little different, they have very different rules. In Tribal Court they have people who act as attorneys and can represent people. In some tribal courts, it is not necessary to actually be an attorney. So there are people that act as counselors in the tribal courts but they’re not licensed attorneys.

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