South Dakota lawmakers vote to delay impeachment of attorney general

South Dakota lawmakers vote to delay impeachment of attorney general
© Greg Nash

The House State Affairs Committee for the South Dakota House of Representatives voted unanimously on Wednesday to delay impeachment proceedings for state Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg (R).

Ravnsborg fatally struck Joe Boever with his car last year when Boever was walking on the side of the road. In November it was reported that Ravnsborg was distracted when he hit Boever, though the source of the distraction was not disclosed. Ravnsborg has maintained that he believed he had hit a deer.

Two articles of impeachment were introduced against Ravnsborg in February after an interview of South Dakota detectives revealed that Ravnsbord had Boever’s glasses in his car, calling into question Ravnsborg claims of not knowing he had hit a man the night of Boever’s death.

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The impeachment articles were for causing Boever's death and for actions taken after his death, alleging that Ravnsborg's conduct did not "meet the standard of the Office of the Attorney General."

But KELO-TV reports that House Speaker Spencer Gosch (R) moved an amendment to the impeachment resolution, HR7001F, effectively halting the proceedings until after the misdemeanor charges against Ravnsborg are resolved.

"I’m disappointed that we are not moving forward more quickly, but understand the desire for full transparency," said Rep. Will Mortenson (R), who introduced the impeachment proceedings against Ravnsborg.

"I have not changed my mind about the duties owed by the South Dakota Attorney General, nor about my conviction that those duties have been breached," Mortenson added. "I hope Mr. Ravnsborg considers resignation in the meantime to help the state turn the page on this unfortunate event."