TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (KFOR) – May 5th is Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day, and the Cherokee Nation is announcing the hiring of a criminal investigator whose main mission will be solving MMIP cases.

Perry Proctor has worked in law enforcement since 1976. He formerly worked at the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation as a cold case detective, and as an investigator for the Department of Interior of Indian Affairs.

Perry Proctor, photo provided by Cherokee Nation.

Proctor has spent the past year working on MMIP cases with the Cherokee Nation Marshal Service. Their workload increased after the McGirt ruling, giving Tribes jurisdiction over crimes that happen or happened previously on tribal land.

Cherokee Nation Marshals now cover more than 7,000 square miles of land in the the Cherokee Nation Reservation, which led to the discovery of new MMIP cases. That increase then led to the need to hire a full-time MMIP investigator.

“We’re here for the victims and victim’s families who need someone to turn to,” Proctor said. “I certainly don’t work alone, there are other investigators who help me. But, we do need someone coordinating, and moving things along to see if we can find resolution for some of our missing tribal citizens,” he said.

Proctor, a tribal citizen, has had success in the past solving MMIP cases and bringing closure to the victims’ families. And he plans to solve many more.

If you have any tips on MMIP cases involving Cherokee Nation citizens or the Cherokee Nation Reservation, please call 918-207-3800.

Photo provided by Cherokee Nation.