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Former South Dakota legislative candidate facing rape charge


A defeated South Dakota legislative candidate has been charged with sexual assault.

Thirty-seven-year-old Bud May of Kyle was arrested Sunday for second-degree rape, according to a criminal complaint filed in Pennington County Court.

That’s a felony punishable by up to 50 years in prison.

May’s defense attorney declined to comment on the case.

May ran as a Republican for one of two House seats in District 27. That includes several western counties and the Pine Ridge Reservation. He finished in last place with 22% of the vote.

This is the second sexual misconduct case to arise against a 2022 legislative candidate. Republican Joel Koskan of Wood is chargedwith exposing a minor to sexual grooming behaviors. He ran for state Senate and was defeated.

Josh Chilson is the news director at South Dakota Public Broadcasting. A Florence, S.D. native, Josh graduated with a journalism degree from South Dakota State University. He has worked as a newspaper reporter and videographer, and most recently as managing editor for Dakota News Now. Josh is based out of SDPB's Sioux Falls studio.