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Category: Local News

Lawmakers Draft Non-Meandered Lake Legislation

Thursday, May 25, 2017

It's an issue that's created waves across the state for the past few months. Twenty-four non-meandered lakes, including Cottonwood Lake in Sully County east of Agar, were closed by state Game, Fish and Parks in April following a state Supreme Court ruling, and years of in-action by the South Dakota Legislature.

Now, a group of lawmakers, including Pierre Representative Mary Duvall, hope to solve the complicated issue of public waters on top of private lands once and for all by drafting legislation aimed at reopening the lakes this summer.

Much of the bill discussion in Pierre Wednesday was on how to make land owners and sportsmen happy, but small business owners were also present to make their views known.

Legislators are pleased with how much input they've received from all sides of the issues. Its public testimony and casual conversations across the state that give them an idea of what issues are still there and need to be addressed.

Committee members are still trying to find a compromise that will make everyone happy, but it's quite a tightrope act to accomplish.

Legislators will continue the process of drafting legislation and hope to finish a potential bill during their next meeting in Pierre on June 2nd. That meeting is also open to the public.

(KSFY contributed to this story)

CategoriesLocal News

2011 Flood: Six Years Later

Thursday, May 25, 2017

This week Pierre and Fort Pierre looks back, as this is the 6 year anniversary of the 2011 flood.

Six years ago, May 24th, is the day that Pierre Mayor Laurie Gill and the Pierre City Commission received the news that it was time to prepare for the flood. Pierre City Commissioner Jamie Huizenga says that it turned into “quite a long summer.”

On that May 24th of 2011, the leaders of the State Emergency Management team and then Fort Pierre Mayor Sam Tidball were in the room when Pierre Mayor Gill arrived, and the US Army Corps of Engineers were on the phone. At that moment, Gill realized it was very serious.

Gill adds another interesting thing after that initial meeting was the amount of water predicted to be released from the dam kept changing day after day.

Gill adds that this day, May 25th six years ago, is when city officials held their first press conference, and that’s when the public first found out about what would be happening. She adds that's when residents started preparing and evacuating, among countless volunteers assisting in the efforts leading up to the release.

CategoriesLocal News

SDSU Hosting Wheat Walk Today

Thursday, May 25, 2017

SDSU Extension will host a Wheat Walk in the Pierre area today. The goal of this event is to provide wheat producers with the latest information to effectively manage their crop. The wheat walk will be held at 10:00 a.m. this morning at the Dakota Lakes Research Farm, which is 17 miles east of Pierre on the south side of SD Highway 34. 

Caren Assman, Executive Director of South Dakota Wheat Incorporated, says this will be a great opportunity for wheat produces to get hands-on knowledge.

SDSU Extension Agronomy Field and State Specialists will be on hand, providing expertise in plant pathology, weed control, entomology, soil fertility and agronomic information. Each specialist will give a brief presentation, followed by time for discussion and questions for the specialists, one-on-one or in small groups. Those attending are welcome to bring samples from their fields for the agronomists to assess. Representatives from the SD Wheat Commission and SD Wheat Inc. will also be present.
Through grant funding from the South Dakota Wheat Commission, there will be no charge to attend the event. Pre-registration is not required. Refreshments will be provided by South Dakota Wheat Inc. 

CategoriesLocal News

Capitol Avenue Rebuild Project Starts Tuesday

Thursday, May 25, 2017

The city of Pierre is putting on the finishing touches in preparation for the largest street project of the year in the Capitol City. Starting Tuesday, the complete rebuild of Capitol Avenue directly in front of the state Capitol will commence.

Pierre City Administrator Leon Schochenmaier says the two blocks in front of the Capitol from Nicolette east to Ree Street will be shut down to traffic. He says the main purpose of this project is to replace a 1927 water main underneath the street.

Pierre Mayoral Candidate Steve Robinson urged the commission Tuesday to ask the state to chip in some funds for the $450,000 project.

The project will include six different contractors. One of the first things that will happen next week is city crews will be installing temporary water service to the state buildings on both sides of the project.

Throughout the majority of the construction project, the following parking areas will be accessible: Parking lot located behind the Soldiers and Sailors Building, on street Capitol Avenue parking east of Ree Street, parking lot behind the Foss Building, parking lot near Hyde Stadium / Boys and Girls Club, and Parking lot north of Capitol Building; and the Capitol Loop exit to Capitol Avenue.

Those interested in Capitol Avenue construction updates are encouraged to follow Pierre Municipal Utilities on Facebook. The overall project is expected to wrap up in August before school starts. 

CategoriesLocal News

Fort Thompson Man Sentenced For March Pierre Crime Spree

Thursday, May 25, 2017

A Fort Thompson man was sentenced in Hughes County court Tuesday in connection to a Pierre crime spree in early March.

34 year old Kyle Felicia was sentenced by Judge John Brown to seven years in prison with three suspended on a ingestion of a controlled substance charge. He was also given a concurrent sentence of 360 days in the county jail on a DUI charge. Charges of Obstructing Law Enforcement, Theft, Driving While Suspended, Reckless Driving, and Aggravated Eluding were all dropped as part of the plea deal.

Charges stem from an incident on Thursday March 2nd; Pierre Police officers received a report of a theft at Walmart. An officer saw the vehicle matching the description of the theft traveling on Airport Road and the driver of the suspected vehicle tried to flee the area and a pursuit was initiated.

The vehicle went from Airport Roadway to Highway 14 and then the vehicle turned off on Kingsway at a high rate of speed. The vehicle ended up stalling in the 3000 block of Kingsway and the driver took off on foot. After a roughly 30 minute search, Felecia was located.

During sentencing, Hughes County States Attorney Wendy Kloeppner stated that Felecia has an extensive criminal history, both in state and federal court. She stated that he has failed in a halfway house before and doesn’t fully admit to the charges.

Brown stated that Felecia has had two previous opportunities in treatment and has no plans for his future when handing down his sentence. 

CategoriesLocal News

Eagle Butte Man Charged With Juvenile Assault

Thursday, May 25, 2017

An Eagle Butte man has been charged with assault with a dangerous weapon and child abuse.

According to US Attorney Randy Seiler, 36 year old Carlin Jimi Jewett Jr. was indicted and pled not guilty to the charges last week.

The indictment alleges that on March 31st in Timber Lake, Jewett unlawfully assaulted two juvenile females with a knife. Due to their age, two counts of child abuse were filed in addition to the assault charges. Court documents don’t state if the juveniles were injured or not.

The maximum penalty Jewett is facing is 10 years in custody and/or a 250,000 dollar fine. He is innocent until such time as proven guilty.

Jewett was remanded to the custody of the US Marshals Service pending trial. A trial date has not yet been set. 

CategoriesLocal News

Vivian Man Pleads Not Guilty To Murdering Infant Daughter

Thursday, May 25, 2017

A Vivian man has pled not guilty to four separate charges, alleging he murdered his 7 week old daughter.

36 year old Gerald Raymond Brink was arraigned on the charges Thursday morning in the Lyman County Courthouse in Kennebec. He appeared before Circuit Judge Patricia DeVaney on the charges of second degree murder, two counts of manslaughter in the first degree, and aggravated battery of an infant.

Court documents allege that on May 4th at 12:30 PM, Brink called 911 to report that his daughter was not breathing. A Lyman County deputy sheriff was dispatched to the Brink residence in the 100 block of North Cedar in Vivian. The infant was found unresponsive in a bedroom. The infant was then transported to Avera St. Mary’s Hospital in Pierre, where she was pronounced dead.

A motion was filed by Brink’s attorney, Brad Schreiber of Pierre, requesting the court set some kind of bond. Brink has been on no bond since being charged earlier this month. Schreiber stated in court Thursday that if bond would be posted, it’s Brink’s intention to live with his parents in Vivian and that he does have a job in construction waiting for him if bond is posted. Schreiber stated that the “allegations are limited to one circumstance and I don’t think he would be a danger to the community as a whole.”

Lyman County States Attorney Steve Smith disagreed with Schreiber during the bond hearing. He requested the bond remain at no bond.  Smith stated that the baby had four skull fractures and was found to have three to six blunt force trauma events to her head “the size of my fist.” He said due to “just extreme nature of this case, he is a danger to society as a whole.”

DeVaney set bond for Brink at 500,000 dollars cash, despite saying Brink is a “potential flight risk.” Devaney also granted a motion to hire a private investigator in this case, not to exceed 5,000 dollars.

During his arraignment in the Lyman County Courthouse, Brink showed emotion, wiping tears away from his face on numerous occasions.

The next court appearance for Brink has not yet been set. Brink is innocent until such time as proven guilty. Smith, along with the State Attorney General’s office, is prosecuting this case.  

CategoriesLocal News

Pierre Woman Pleads Not Guilty For Embezzling From Church

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

A Pierre woman who was sentenced to six years of probation for embezzling more than $34,000 from a Fort Pierre economic development group back in May of 2015 has pled not guilty to additional grand theft charges.

60-year-old Joni Boub of Pierre was arraigned on the latest charges in Hughes County Court Tuesday, alleging that she embezzled money from her church while on probation.

Court documents say that Boub was charged by a Hughes County Grand Jury with one count in grand theft, alleging that she embezzled $60,166 dollars from the Dakota Association of the United Church of Christ between June 15thof 2015 and July 22nd of 2016. The Forgery charge states that on July 22nd of 2016, she altered a written check belonging to the church.  

Boub has been in the Hughes County Jail since early April on a 10,000 dollar cash bond. During her arraignment Tuesday, Judge John Brown reduced bond for Boub to a Personal Recognizance bond, subject she live at Betty’s Place in Pierre and have no contact with money at any potential employer.

Boub was charged in January of 2015 for writing more than 40 forged checks while she worked as the office manager of the Fort Pierre Development Corporation. Boub was ordered in 2015 to pay court costs and restitution to the development group. She was given a 10 year suspended sentence at the time.

Due to the prior conviction, Hughes County States Attorney Wendy Kloeppner filed a part II Habitual offender information which would increase her felony charges by one class each if convicted.  

Boub’s next court appearance will be July 11th at 3:00 P.M. 

CategoriesLocal News

ADI Changes Pierre Flight Schedule

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Due to passenger demands, Aerodynamics Inc. (ADI) has switched a flight in their flight schedule, adding an additional outbound and incoming plane on Sunday at the Pierre Regional Airport.

Pierre Airport Manager Mike Isaacs says that, effective this past Sunday, ADI switched their flight schedule. He says this move is going to relieve some stress for Sunday travelers.

There are still 12 flights a week going out of Pierre and essential nothing has changed except moving one flight from Wednesday to Sunday. 

CategoriesLocal News

Fort Pierre Man Avoids Jail In Rape Case

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

A Fort Pierre man was sentenced in Hughes County Court Tuesday to the charge of 4th degree rape.

19 year old Brandon Hughes avoided jail time, as Judge John Brown handed down a three year supervised probationary sentence and ordered Hughes to register as a sex offender for that period.

It is alleged that between December 12th of 2015 and January 30th of 2016 Hughes, who was 18 at the time, committed the act of sexual penetration with a person who was fifteen at the time of the incident, three years younger than Hughes. As part of the plea deal, a same charge in Stanley County was dropped. The plea deal also stated that the state keep silent during sentencing.

Hughes’ attorney Brad Schreiber stated in court that Hughes was always remorseful for what happened. He adds that this incident was an eye opener for Hughes and stated that his client will never be in court again.

The victim’s mother testified in court Tuesday, stating that Hughes took advantage of her daughter. “How many more girls are victims?” She asked for the maximum sentence possible for Hughes.

As part of the plea deal, Hughes County States Attorney Wendy Kloeppner kept silent during sentencing.  

During sentencing, Brown told Hughes that “I don’t know that prision will serve a purpose for you or the victim.”

In addition to probation and registering as a sex offender, he was ordered to follow all conditions under the sex offender registry and have no contact with the victim or the victim’s family. He will also have to pay court costs and received a suspended imposition of sentence. 

CategoriesLocal News
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