The Republican Attorney General of South Dakota – who thought he had killed a deer when he hit a pedestrian badly on the highway last year – was hit with misconduct charges, officials announced Thursday.
According to deputy Hyde County state attorney Emily Sowell, 44-year-old Jason Rainsborg faces three counts of careless driving, operating a motor vehicle using a mobile electronic device and exiting his lane.
If convicted of the top charge, he faces up to a year in prison for a 12-year accident that killed 55-year-old Joseph Boever.
Sowell said the evidence does not support more serious felony crimes and that Ravensborg was not intoxicated at the time of the incident.
He gave a blood sample about 15 hours after the fatal collision, with no alcohol in his system.
After the accident, Ravensborg told officers that he thought he had mortgaged the 2011 Ford Taurus as a deer or some other large animal, as he arrived on US Highway 14 at 10:30 pm.
He was on his way home from a GOP fundraiser at Rostore’s Bar and Grill, according to the South Dakota GOP website, with a chance to win a handgun engraved with then President Trump’s name.
His spokesman, Tim Bormann, Told a local paper He had not consumed any alcohol before getting behind the wheel and called 911 just after the accident.
Beadle County State’s Attorney Michael Moore said Boevers’ family was angry that Ravensborg did not face more serious charges.
“They obviously don’t like our decision in this case, but as we all know, the victims have not made that decision,” Moore said.
Revesborg, who was elected for his first term in 2018, was distracted by swimmers in a boeuvre that climbed on the highway’s shoulder, according to accident investigators.
South Dakota Highway Patrol – Handled the investigation with the help of the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The South Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation, which responded to the Attorney General, recused itself.
With Associated Press