Impeachment Articles Filed Against AG Ravnsborg

Feb 23, 2021

 

House lawmakers are introducing articles of impeachment against Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg for his involvement in a fatal car crash last September.

The articles were introduced moments after Governor Kristi Noem called on Ravnsborg to resign.

There are two articles to impeach the attorney general.

Ravnsborg faces three misdemeanors, but no felonies from a crash that killed Highmore resident Joseph Boever last September. Authorities say Boever was walking on the shoulder of the highway the night of the crash.

The articles are co-sponsored by house majority and minority leaders. They say the attorney general must be removed from office for the fatal crash and for “unbecoming” actions Ravnsborg took following the incident.

Republican Representative Will Mortenson says the attorney general has a special obligation to follow laws and protect the public.

“Jason Ravnsborg’s actions and statements related to the death of Joseph Boever breached those obligations to the people of South Dakota, and he should be removed from office,” Mortenson says.

Governor Kristi Noem says Ravnsborg should stepdown. A spokesperson for the attorney general says he has no plans to leave his job.

Democrat Jamie Smith says Ravsnborg has lost the confidence of the people of South Dakota.

“What happened was a tragedy for all involved,” said Smith. “However, that cannot deter us from fulfilling our duties… He should be removed from office for the betterment of the state.”

If Ravnsborg resigns or is removed from office, the governor has the power to fill the vacancy by appointment.

Impeachment requires a simple majority in the House. Conviction requires two-thirds of Senate members. This is the first time that articles of impeachment have been issued against a constitutional officer in South Dakota.