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Top Republicans call Koskan allegations 'horrific'

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South Dakota Republican Party

Top South Dakota Republicans are calling the allegations against a state senate candidate “serious” and “horrific.”

Republican candidate Joel Koskan is charged with one count of exposing a minor to sexual grooming behaviors. It’s a class four felony.

A probable cause statement written by the Division of Criminal Investigation details Koskan committed years of child sexual abuse and surveillance.

"The South Dakota Republican Party unequivocally opposes child abuse in all forms," said Dan Lederman, SDGOP chair. "The South Dakota Republican Party trusts the justice system to work through the allegation.”

Gov. Kristi Noem called the allegations "horrific" and said they must be thoroughly investigated.

“If true, he should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” Noem said in a statement.

Koskan is running for office in District 26, which includes Chamberlain and the Rosebud Reservation. State Democrats are calling on Koskan to end his campaign.

Koskan is scheduled to appear in court on Monday morning.

Lee Strubinger is SDPB’s Rapid City-based news and political reporter. A former reporter for Fort Lupton Press (CO) and Colorado Public Radio, Lee holds a master’s in public affairs reporting from the University of Illinois-Springfield.
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