State Watch

South Dakota lawmakers release petition to impeach state attorney general

South Dakota GOP lawmakers released a petition on Friday calling to convene a special legislative session to impeach state Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg (R) after a car crash that killed a pedestrian.

The petition was circulated by South Dakota House Speaker Spencer Gosch (R), according to The Associated Press.

The special session detailed in the petition would be convened for  "investigating and evaluating whether the conduct of Jason Ravnsborg ... surrounding the death of Joe Boever, involved impeachable offenses," AP reported.

The Hill has reached out to a spokesman for Ravnsborg for comment.

Ravnsborg pleaded no contest in late August to two misdemeanor charges for allegedly hitting and killing Boever in September 2020.

Ravnsborg was driving at night and allegedly hit Boever, who was walking on the wrong side of the highway. He said that he thought he hit a deer, but detectives later found Ravnsborg had Boever's glasses in his car.

Ravnsborg pleaded no contest to driving outside of his lane and using an electronic device while driving. Prosecutors dropped a third charge of careless driving.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) called for Ravnsborg to resign after his plea agreement. If he did not resign, Noem said the legislature should consider impeachment.

Two-thirds of the South Dakota House and Senate would need to sign Friday's petition for the special session to convene in November, according to AP.

According to the news wire, a simple majority of the House would need to approve the articles of impeachment, while two-thirds of the state Senate would need to vote to convict Ravnsborg.

Friday's petition is not the first time lawmakers sought to impeach Ravnsborg.

A previous effort to impeach Ravnsborg began in February after the detail about Boever's glasses was revealed. However, the state House voted to delay the effort while he had unresolved charges against him.

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