South Dakota Attorney General Investigated After Claiming He Thought Hit-And-Run Fatality Was A Deer

Illustration for article titled South Dakota Attorney General Investigated After Claiming He Thought Hit-And-Run Fatality Was A Deer


The North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation has been called into its neighboring state to investigate the fatal hit-and-run of 55-year-old Joe Boever, who died after he was allegedly struck by a vehicle driven by South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg.


South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem held a press conference Sunday to announce that the state attorney general had been involved in a fatal crash, but did not immediately offer more details.

According to the Department of Public Safety, Ravnsborg reported that he had hit a deer Saturday night, but the body of Boever was found in an undisclosed location the next morning, according to the Rapid City Journal:

Ravnsborg, a 44-year-old from Pierre, was driving a sedan westbound on U.S. Highway 14 on Saturday night. He told the Hyde County Sheriff’s Office that around 10:30 p.m. he hit a deer a mile west of Highmore.


Dakota News Now reported that the police recreated the scene of the crash over the weekend, and a reporter was informed by a police officer that a white Ford F-150 pickup with front-end damage on the side of the road (photographed here) had also been involved, though it has not yet been officially mentioned in any other reports or statements.

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There’s no further information on whether Ravnsborg made any attempt to identify the object he hit in the road after the event. He was reportedly driving home from the Spink County Lincoln Day Dinner, a GOP fundraiser.

South Dakota’s Division of Criminal Investigation would normally handle this sort of investigation but is under the authority of the state Attorney General. To avoid a conflict of interest, the neighboring state’s equivalent agency, the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation, has been brought in instead, the Rapid City Journal reported. The investigation will also be handled by South Dakota Secretary of Public Safety Craig Price.


Attorney General Ravnsborg offered the following statement following Sunday’s press conference, via

“I am shocked and filled with sorrow following the events of last night. As Gov. Noem stated, I am fully cooperating with the investigation and I fully intend to continue to do so moving forward,” Ravnsborg said. “At this time I offer my deepest sympathy and condolences to the family.”


Regardless of Ravnsborg’s situation, and there’s a lot unknown at this time, here is some healthy advice: If you ever hit something large with your vehicle and you think it may have been alive, stop your fucking car and get out to check. The consequences get exponentially worse if you don’t, not to mention you could save somebody’s life.

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