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South Dakota

Bison Attacks Another Woman in South Dakota; Pants Stay On This Time.

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By Jimmy Orr, Cowboy State Daily

It’s August and it’s South Dakota. That means someone is going to get thrown by a bison.

Reminiscent of the spectacular bison de-pantsing of 2020, another woman in South Dakota got in the crosshairs of a bison — and lost.

This time, it’s not as dramatic. It could be but no video has surfaced.

Just a fuzzy picture and an eyewitness.

Kind of like a Saquatch sighting.

Angela Ohmer, from Rapid City, South Dakota, took a photo of downed person, a departing bison, and a man looking like he’s there to help.

Ohmer explained on her Facebook page that this occurred during a wedding in South Dakota on Saturday.

“Only in South Dakota can you go to a wedding and witness a bison tossing a woman that got too close!!!! Not even kidding!  This is not a petting zoo, homey!” Ohmer said.

Perhaps the bison was simply celebrating the event and was tossing the woman like the bride tosses her bouquet.

Ohmer went on to clarify that unlike the situation of a year ago where the dimwitted tourist did try to pet a bison, this couple was just walking past the bison “and it turned on them.”

Sheila Schielke-Ross concurred: “She was simply walking to her cabin from the wedding. It randomly turned direction and attacked her with no warning. Luckily, a ranger was there and was able to immediately intervene. She did nothing to provoke the animal, other than walk.”

Kobee Stalder, visitor services program manager for the Custer State Park, said the woman did not suffer any significant injuries.

“Other than some bumps and bruises, she was OK,” he told the Rapid City Journal. “We’re very fortunate in that aspect that no more severe injuries were sustained during that incident.”

Nathan Foote, who appears to be acting as the official scorekeeper of South Dakota, noted that bison are leading women by a 2-0 margin.

Another commenter posted a photo of Custer State Park’s new ambulance featuring a bison on it. 

And actually, that’s not a joke. That is on the side of the service’s ambulance.

In the meantime, commenters on the Yellowstone: Invasion of the Idiots Facebook page, did not seem to be too concerned.

“Thank God! I was afraid the tourist season would end without the annual bison toss the tourist game. The bison love it,” said Marie Morgan.

As for the woman who took the photo, she left a happy person.

“Best. Wedding. Ever. 😆,” Ohmer said.

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Military Blocks South Dakota AG’s Promotion Until Charges Cleared

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

The U.S. Army Reserve is blocking a promotion for South Dakota’s attorney general until charges stemming from a fatal hit-and-run he was involved in last fall are cleared.

South Dakota AG Jason Ravnsborg announced last month that he would be promoted to colonel in the Army Reserve, which he has served in for 24 years.

“It is quite an honor and I have been proud to serve our great nation for over 24 years!” Ravnsborg wrote on social media at the time. “Through 3 deployments, Battalion Command and 4 company commands serving with so many other great Americans! HOOAH!”

However, the Army Reserve has flagged his promotion and won’t submit it to the U.S. Senate for confirmation until the charges against Ravnsborg are resolved, according to the Associated Press.

Ravnsborg, who was elected South Dakota’s attorney general AG in 2018, was involved in a hit-and-run collision in September that resulted in the death of Joseph Boever.

Authorities said Boever was walking along the shoulder of U.S. Highway 14 west of Highmore, South Dakota, when Ravnsborg’s vehicle veered onto the shoulder and struck Boever. It was confirmed Ravnsborg was distracted when his car hit Boever.

Ravnsborg has been charged with three misdemeanor offenses related to the collision: operating a vehicle while using a mobile electronic device, illegal lane change and careless driving. Each carries a maximum penalty of 30 days in jail and fines of $500 each.

He has pleaded not guilty to all three charges.

In a 911 call made by Ravnsborg the night of the incident, the dispatcher asked him if he might have struck a deer and he responded that he did not know, later adding that it could have been a deer and that it was in the roadway.

The Hyde County Sheriff arrived on scene to assess the damage to the AG’s vehicle and look for the deer.

Neither the sheriff nor Ravnsborg saw Boever’s body in the ditch, even though Ravnsborg used his cell phone flashlight to search the area.

Ravnsborg borrowed the sheriff’s personal vehicle to drive back to Pierre, South Dakota, that night.

He returned to the scene of the crash the following morning on his way to return the sheriff’s vehicle. He and an employee stopped to look for the animal again, but instead found Boever’s body nearby.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem called on Ravnsborg to resign, but he refused. Impeachment proceedings began in late February, but have been put on hold.

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South Dakota Attorney General Being Promoted to Colonel, Months After Killing Man

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Just a few months after being charged in relation to the hit-and-run death of a man, South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg is being promoted by the U.S. Army Reserves.

Ravnsborg announced on his social media account Thursday that he was being promoted to a full colonel position in the Reserves.

“It is quite an honor and I have been proud to serve our great nation for over 24 years!” Ravnsborg wrote. “Through 3 deployments, Battalion Command and 4 company commands serving with so many other great Americans! HOOAH!”

Ravnsborg was elected South Dakota AG in 2018.

In September, he was involved with a hit-and-run collision that resulted in the death of Joseph Boever.

Authorities said Boever was walking along the shoulder of U.S. Highway 14 west of Highmore when Ravnsborg’s vehicle veered onto the shoulder and struck Boever.

Ravnsborg has been charged with three misdemeanor offenses related to the collision: operating a vehicle while using a mobile electronic device, illegal lane change and careless driving. Each carries a maximum penalty of 30 days in jail and fines of $500 each.

In a 911 call made by Ravnsborg the night of the incident, the dispatcher asked him if he might have struck a deer and he responded that he did not know, later adding that it could have been a deer and that it was right in the roadway.

The Hyde County Sheriff arrived on scene to assess the damage to the AG’s vehicle and look for the deer.

Neither the sheriff nor Ravnsborg saw Boever’s body in the ditch, even though Ravnsborg used his cell phone flashlight to search the area.

Ravnsborg borrowed the sheriff’s personal vehicle to drive back to Pierre that night.

He returned to the scene of the crash the following morning on his way to return the sheriff’s vehicle. He and an employee stopped to look for the animal again, but instead found Boever’s body nearby.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem called on Ravnsborg to resign, but he refused. Impeachment proceedings began in late February, but have been put on hold.

Firefighters Combat South Dakota Wildfire

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A 2,100-acre wildfire burning west of Rapid City, South Dakota, is currently almost halfway contained, after being discovered just two days ago.

The Schroeder Fire was 47% contained as of Wednesday morning, according to fire tracking website InciWeb. Around 250 people were fighting the fire.

The containment rate has stayed the same for about 24 hours.

The fire started sometime Monday morning, however, its cause is still unknown.

On Wednesday, firefighters planned to focus on protecting structures throughout the fire area and constructing and improving fire lines on the northern and southern areas of the fire’s perimeter.

However, gusty winds of up to 29 miles per hour were expected to present a challenge for the day.

Overnight crews were to continue patrolling and monitoring fire activity around structures and private property.

Currently, six aircraft are being used to combat the fire by dropping fire retardant on the flames.

On Monday, the Pennington County, South Dakota, Sheriff’s Office confirmed at least one home and two pole barns had been lost in the fire. According to KOTA TV, around 400 to 500 homes have been evacuated.

South Dakota Gov. Krisi Noem has declared a state of emergency in the face of the fire.

Due to the smoke and fire, Mount Rushmore even closed to visitors both Tuesday and Wednesday.

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South Dakota Senator Tells Biden To Grab His Gun, Immediately Faces Backlash

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A U.S. senator from South Dakota found himself in hot water on Thursday due to a tweet he directed at President Joe Biden.

On Thursday, U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds responded to Biden’s call for banning assault rifles in the wake of a Boulder, Colorado, shooting this week by tweeting a photo that showed a statue of Rounds holding a gun and a dog looking up at him.

“Hey @JoeBiden – come and take it. Careful, she bites too,” Rounds tweeted.

The statue is part of the Trail of Governors in Pierre, South Dakota, which features the statue of Rounds and two other former governors and their dogs. Rounds served as South Dakota governor from 2003 to 2011.

Rounds faced immediate backlash from the tweet, with some assuming the senator was threatening the president with violence.

“The GOP has already fomented one deadly insurrection,” the South Dakota Democratic Party wrote in response to the tweet. “This kind of rhetoric that can foment another armed insurrection. This seditious behavior is only aimed at getting people hurt. Shame on you, @SenatorRounds for agitating violent rhetoric and tweeting veiled threats.”

One person tagged the Secret Service in a tweet, saying its agents should reach out to Rounds about the post.

The senator hadn’t responded to any of the messages or posted any follow-up tweets by Thursday afternoon.

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Noem Calls For South Dakota AG to Resign After Fatal Crash

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem has asked state attorney general Jason Ravnsborg to resign after he killed a man in an accident last fall.

“Now that the investigation has closed and charges have been filed, I believe the Attorney General should resign,” Noem said in a statement. “I have reviewed the material we are releasing, starting today, and I encourage others to review it as well.”

Some South Dakota lawmakers are looking into impeachment proceedings, should Ravnsborg decide to not resign. It would be the first formal impeachment proceedings in the state’s history.

“Rep. Will Mortenson is bringing the impeachment articles with support of House Majority Leader Kent Peterson and Minority Leader Jamie Smith. They’ll make themselves available to the press following the close of floor session today,” tweeted Argus Leader political reporter Joe Sneve.

Ravnsborg has been charged with three misdemeanor offenses in the September death of Joseph Boever, who was walking along the shoulder of Highway 14 west of Highmore when authorities say Ravnsborg’s vehicle veered onto the shoulder and struck Boever.

Ravnsborg was charged with operating a vehicle while using a mobile electronic device, illegal lane change and careless driving. Each carries a maximum penalty of 30 days in jail and fines of $500 each.

In a 911 call made by Ravnsborg the night of the incident, the dispatcher asked him if he might have struck a deer and he responded that he did not know, later adding that it could have been a deer and that it was right in the roadway.

The Hyde County Sheriff arrived on scene to assess the damage to the AG’s vehicle and look for the “deer.”

Neither the sheriff nor Ravnsborg saw Boever’s body in the ditch, even though Ravnsborg used his cell phone flashlight to search the area.

Ravnsborg borrowed the sheriff’s personal vehicle to drive back to Pierre that night.

He returned to the scene of the crash the following morning on his way to return the sheriff’s vehicle. He and an employee stopped to look for the animal again, but instead found Boever’s body nearby.

Ravnsborg’s spokesman told the newspaper on Monday that the attorney general had no plans of resigning.

“The investigators have presented their findings and recommended misdemeanor infractions in a wholistic process they described as going ‘above and beyond,’ and we look forward to the continued due process of the law,” Mike Deaver said.

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South Dakota AG Was Distracted During Fatal Collision

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg was distracted when he fatally struck a man with his vehicle in September while returning home from an event, officials announced Monday.

The announcement came during a news conference with South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and South Dakota Department of Public Safety cabinet Secretary Craig Price.

Price said investigators are still trying to determine what type of distraction caused Ravnsborg to take his eyes off the road in the Sept. 12 accident. He also said the victim, 55-year-old Joseph Boever, was walking along the shoulder of the road when he was hit.

Price wouldn’t say where Boever’s body ended up.

Much of the investigation into the crash has been completed, with more information expected in the next few weeks.

A reporter asked Noem whether she called for Ravnsborg’s resignation from the AG’s office, but she said she was going to refrain from expressing her personal opinions until the investigation was complete.

The crash report and a photo of Ravnsborg’s vehicle taken a couple days after the crash were also released on Monday by South Dakota officials. The toxicology reports and 911 call were released by South Dakota DPS last month.

In the 911 call, the dispatcher asked Ravnsborg if he possibly struck a deer and he responded that he did not know, later adding that it could have been a deer and that it was right in the roadway.

The toxicology reports showed no drugs or alcohol were found in Ravnsborg’s system, although it should be noted that he took his first toxicology screening more than 12 hours after the collision.

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911 Call, Tox Reports Released In Fatal South Dakota AG Crash

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Jason Ravnsborg quickly told the 911 dispatcher he hit “something…that was in the middle of the road” when he called for help on Sept. 12, according to a transcript of the call released recently by officials.

The South Dakota attorney general told the dispatcher he wasn’t sure what he hit, but his car had been severely damaged upon impact.

“I hit something,” he said to the dispatcher.

The next day, Ravnsborg discovered he hit a person, 55-year-old Joseph Boever, who had died sometime after being struck by the attorney general’s vehicle.

The Sept. 12 accident is still under investigation by a number of authorities, including a Wyoming crash reconstruction expert and the North Dakota Bureau of Investigation, according to The Associated Press.

The state’s Department of Public Safety released three toxicology reports, the 911 call and the transcript of the call this week.

In the 911 call, the dispatcher asked Ravnsborg if he possibly struck a deer and he responded that he did not know, later adding that it could have been a deer and that it was right in the roadway.

The toxicology reports showed no drugs or alcohol were found in Ravnsborg’s system, although it should be noted that he took his first toxicology screening more than 12 hours after the collision.

After the crash, Ravnsborg issued a statement reiterating that he hadn’t been drinking while at an event in Redfield, South Dakota, before driving home to Pierre. He was alone in his vehicle.

“I didn’t see what I hit and stopped my vehicle immediately to investigate,” he said in the statement.

The Hyde County Sheriff arrived on scene to assess the damage to the AG’s vehicle and look for the deer.

Neither the sheriff nor Ravnsborg saw Boever’s body in the ditch, even though Ravnsborg used his cell phone flashlight to search the area.

Ravnsborg borrowed the sheriff’s personal vehicle to drive back to Pierre that night.

He returned to the scene of the crash the following morning on his way to return the sheriff’s vehicle. He and an employee stopped to look for the animal again, but instead found Boever’s body nearby.

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Victim’s Family Speaks Out Regarding South Dakota AG Crash

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A family member of the man killed last weekend in a crash involving South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg is speaking out regarding the investigation.

On Thursday, an Atlanta news station posted an interview with Tony Boever, Joseph Boever’s brother. In the discussion, Tony Boever said some people have even been blaming his brother for the the accident in which he was hit by a car driven by Ravnsborg, an event still under investigation.

“My worst fear is that my brother was just laying on the side of the road, within the reach of the headlights from where the car apparently stopped and was laying there dying and suffering,” Tony Boever said in the interview.

Ravnsborg said in a statement earlier this week that he drove home from the Spink County Lincoln Day Dinner in Redfield, South Dakota, around 9:15 p.m. on Saturday.

He didn’t drink any alcohol before, during or after the event, and said that on his way back to Pierre he hit what he believed to be a deer.

“I didn’t see what I hit and stopped my vehicle immediately to investigate,” he said in the statement.

Ravnsborg was alone and uninjured in the collision. He then called 911 to report hitting a deer.

The Hyde County Sheriff arrived on scene to assess the damage to the AG’s vehicle and look for the deer.

Neither the sheriff nor Ravnsborg saw Boever’s body in the ditch, even though Ravnsborg used his cell phone flashlight to search the area, he said.

He returned to the scene of the crash the following morning on his way to return the sheriff’s vehicle. He and an employee stopped to look for the animal again, but instead found Boever’s body nearby.

“My chief of staff and I checked and it was apparent that Mr. Boever was deceased,” Ravnsborg said. “I immediately drove to Sheriff Volek’s home to report the discovery and he accompanied me back to the scene. Once there, the sheriff instructed me that he would handle the investigation, and asked me to return to Pierre.” 

Tony Boever questioned Ravnsborg’s reasoning for going back the next day to the area where the crash happened.

He also questioned the transparency in the investigation, as the case involves one of South Dakota’s highest officials. He noted Ravnsborg hadn’t been placed on administrative leave yet, something that didn’t sit right with him.

“You’re innocent until proven guilty, but you also don’t get to just live your life like nothing happened,” Tony Boever said.

A medical examination on Boever’s body was completed earlier this week in Minnesota. North Dakota investigators are also assisting the investigation of the crash.

According to his obituary, Boever was a South Dakota native who held a nursing degree and was known for his gentle personality.

He graduated from Brookings High School in 1982 and received his nursing degree from the University of South Dakota. He married his wife, Jennifer Mohr, in 2017.

Boever worked in various nursing homes over the years, was a handyman and had a natural talent for gardening, especially when he cultivated jade plants. He was also a voracious reader who taught himself to read at five.

His obituary touted Boever’s insatiable curiousity, quit wit and dry humor.

“He loved his wife and family as we loved him and his passing leaves a hole in all our hearts,” the obituary stated.

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South Dakota Attorney General Under Investigation Following Deadly Crash And Claim He Hit Deer

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

The South Dakota Highway Patrol continues to investigate the death of a South Dakota man who was allegedly hit Saturday night by a car driven by the state’s attorney general.

Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg, in a statement released about the accident, also said he thought he had hit a deer until he returned to the scene the next day and found the body of 55-year-old Highmore, South Dakota, resident Joseph Boever.

According to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, Ravnsborg released a two-page statement Monday regarding the crash to dispel any rumors.

Ravnsborg said that he drove home from the Spink County Lincoln Day Dinner in Redfield, South Dakota, around 9:15 p.m. on Saturday. He didn’t drink any alcohol before, during or after the event, and said that on his way back to Pierre he hit what he believed to be a deer.

“I didn’t see what I hit and stopped my vehicle immediately to investigate,” he said in the statement.

Ravnsborg was alone and uninjured in the collision. He then called 911 to report hitting a deer.

The Hyde County Sheriff arrived on scene to assess the damage to the AG’s vehicle and look for the deer.

Neither the sheriff nor Ravnsborg saw Boever’s body in the ditch, even though Ravnsborg used his cell phone flashlight to search the area.

Ravnsborg borrowed the sheriff’s personal vehicle to drive back to Pierre that night.

He returned to the scene of the crash the following morning on his way to return the sheriff’s vehicle. He and an employee stopped to look for the animal again, but instead found Boever’s body nearby.

“My chief of staff and I checked and it was apparent that Mr. Boever was deceased,” Ravnsborg said. “I immediately drove to Sheriff Volek’s home to report the discovery and he accompanied me back to the scene. Once there, the sheriff instructed me that he would handle the investigation, and asked me to return to Pierre.” 

Craig Price, secretary for South Dakota’s Department of Public Safety, said Tuesday a medical examination of Boever was conducted in Minnesota because South Dakota’s medical examiner was out-of-state.

Price’s comments came during a news conference with Gov. Kristi Noem.

In addition to the South Dakota Highway Patrol, the accident is being investigated by the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Price said. He added Ravnsborg and other witnesses are being interviewed as part of the investigation and said the state is looking into working with an out-of-state collision reconstruction expert as well.

Price said details of Ravnsborg’s 911 call to authorities will be released later.

Noem said the issue of whether Ravnsborg will be placed on administrative leave has not yet been addressed.

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South Dakota Attorney General Reports Hitting Deer But Accused of Hitting & Killing Person Instead

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

South Dakota’s attorney general has been accused of hitting a pedestrian in eastern South Dakota with his car over the weekend and reporting instead that he collided with an animal.

Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg was driving the vehicle involved in the crash when it occurred at about 10:30 p.m. Saturday in Hyde County, South Dakota, Gov. Kristi Noem announced Sunday.

The South Dakota Highway Patrol is investigating the crash. Department of Public Safety Secretary Craig Price joined Noem at the news conference on Sunday to talk about the investigation.

Few details about the accident were provided at the news conference and no information was provided about reports that Ravnsborg reporting hitting wildlife after the incident.

But a news release from DPS confirmed Ravnsborg told sheriff’s officers he hit a deer and hadn’t been injured in the collision.

The pedestrian’s body was found Sunday morning and was identified as 55-year-old Highmore, South Dakota, resident Joseph Boever.

Ravnsborg has been in office since 2018.

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South Dakota Gov to Leftists: Don’t Even Try to Mess With Mt. Rushmore

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South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem has received a lot of national exposure this year for refusing to close her state down due to the coronavirus pandemic and now she’s in the news for speaking up about the riots which have occurred across the U.S.

Speaking on FOX News on Wednesday about the destruction and toppling of statues across the country, Noem said any attempt to desecrate Mt. Rushmore will be met with a strong push-back.

“This is no longer about equality,” Noem told “Fox & Friends” on Wednesday. “This is a radical rewriting of our history and in South Dakota we won’t stand for it.”

The issue came to a head when she tweeted “Not on my watch” in response to conservative commentator Ben Shapiro’s statement that Mt. Rushmore could be the next target of attack from radical leftists.

“This is a national monument. The more we focus on the flaws of these men who are on our mountain, the less likely we are to recognize the virtues and the lessons we can learn from their lives,” the governor said.

“This really is the message I have for those who love Mt Rushmore and as a country what it represents to us,” she said.

“We will do all we can to make sure this message is loud and clear,” she said. “We will make sure that Mt. Rushmore stays as majestic as it is today.”

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