South Dakota

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No One Knows What It Is, but There's a $60M Hunt for It

Deep underground in SD, researchers seek mysterious dark matter that holds universe together

(Newser) - In a former gold mine a mile underground, inside a titanium tank filled with a rare liquified gas, scientists have begun the search for what so far has been unfindable: dark matter. Scientists are pretty sure the invisible stuff makes up most of the universe's mass and say we...

Historic Impeachment Trial in South Dakota Concludes

State AG Jason Ravnsborg convicted, removed from office

(Newser) - Update: The South Dakota Senate on Tuesday convicted Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg of two impeachment charges stemming from a 2020 fatal accident, removing and barring him from future office in a stinging rebuke that showed most senators didn’t believe his account of the crash. Ravnsborg, a first-term Republican who...

Girl, 7, Shows Off Her Communion Wine Chugging Skills

Watch the priest's face as Brynley Heidebrink goes to town on that chalice

(Newser) - You're not usually supposed to throw back Holy Communion wine like it's last call at the local watering hole, especially if you're only 7, but Brynley Heidebrink just broke the mold. The Sioux Falls Argus Leader reports that the little girl celebrated her first communion on April...

A Historic Senate Trial Looms in South Dakota

State House votes to impeach Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg over fatal crash

(Newser) - A historic Senate trial looms in South Dakota, where the state House on Tuesday impeached state Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg over a 2020 car crash that killed a pedestrian. The AP reports Ravnsborg, a Republican, sent two "defiant" letters to lawmakers on Monday night. In one he penned, he...

Restaurant's New Hire Talks, Plays Music, and Works for Free

Faced with worker shortage, Tin Lizzie's in Deadwood, SD, recruited a robot server

(Newser) - At the Tin Lizzie Gaming Resort in Deadwood, SD, a labor shortage left management scrambling to figure out a way to alleviate current workers' stresses. "We thought outside the box," Assistant General Manager Josh Thurmes tells Local 12 in introducing the casino eatery's newest staffer: a robot...

Here Are the 10 States People Are Fleeing

Residents are especially saying so long to New Jersey

(Newser) - Over the past year, people in the US made some major life changes—including moving out of state. Whether it was to be closer to family during the pandemic or simply a desire for a life in a less-dense area, plenty of Americans made mini-migrations across state lines. United Van...

Senate's No. 2 Republican Decides Against Retiring

John Thune is in line for McConnell's leadership job

(Newser) - Republican leaders have been trying to talk Sen. John Thune, who'd been considering retirement for months, into seeking reelection. The minority whip is a good bet to succeed Sen. Mitch McConnell as the party's Senate leader, Politico reports; McConnell turns 80 in February. They got their wish Saturday,...

Chief Offers Holiday Card, Gets Shocking Murder Confession

South Dakota's Brent Hanson allegedly killed brother, sister-in-law, unborn child

(Newser) - A South Dakota man has allegedly confessed to murdering his brother and sister-in-law, who was nine months pregnant, days before Christmas. The confession came about in an unusual way. On Dec. 14, Milbank Police Chief Boyd VanVooren sent Brent Hanson a Facebook message asking him to come to the station...

Official: Noem's Daughter Received Special Treatment

She says Noem's daughter was given a third chance to obtain a real estate license

(Newser) - South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem’s daughter received unusual treatment in an application for her real estate license, including an extra opportunity to obtain it after failing to meet federal requirements, the former director of a state appraiser agency told lawmakers Tuesday. Sherry Bren's testimony before a legislative panel...

Teachers Scramble for Dollars at 'Dystopian' Event

$5K was up for grabs at South Dakota hockey game

(Newser) - Organizers described the "Dash for Cash" event at a junior hockey game in South Dakota as a fun way to get some extra cash to local teachers—but after video of the event went viral, some viewers said they were unsettled by the sight of teachers kneeling to grab...

Mother Who Left Infant in Field Is Sentenced

Theresa Bentaas receives 10 years, with nine suspended

(Newser) - A South Dakota judge on Thursday sentenced a woman to 10 years in the state prison system for her infant son's 1981 death that went unsolved for decades. Judge Bradley Zell called the sentencing of 60-year-old Theresa Bentaas a decision that he belabored for weeks, in part because it...

SD House Launches an 'Unprecedented' Probe Into AG

No state official there has been impeached; that may change with Jason Ravnsborg case

(Newser) - South Dakota's House launched an investigation Tuesday into whether the state's attorney general should be impeached for his conduct surrounding a car crash last year that killed a pedestrian. A sizable majority of the Republican-dominated House voted to have a committee prepare a report and recommend whether Attorney...

Mother Convicted in 1981 Death of Newborn Left in Field

Theresa Bentaas, who allegedly said she was 'young and stupid,' faces life in prison

(Newser) - Update: A South Dakota woman has been convicted in the death of her newborn son, found alone in a cornfield 40 years ago. Theresa Bentaas, 60, of Sioux Falls, entered what's known as an Alford plea to manslaughter charges, a move in which she technically admits no guilt, reports...

South Dakota Tries to Follow Texas' Lead on Abortion

Gov. Kristi Noem issues executive order with new restrictions

(Newser) - South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem is tightening the state's abortion laws, starting with an executive order. An order issued by the Republican governor states that abortion-inducing medication can only be prescribed by a physician licensed in South Dakota after an in-person examination; further, the medication must be collected in...

Attorney General's Plea Deal Upsets Victim's Family

Jason Ravnsborg is fined $1K in the death of a man who was hit while walking along a highway

(Newser) - South Dakota's attorney general was convicted of two misdemeanors Thursday in the death of a man struck by a vehicle while walking along a rural highway one night last fall. Jason Ravnsborg also was fined $1K on Thursday under the terms of his plea deal , the Argus Leader reports....

South Dakota AG Takes Plea Deal a Day Before Trial

Jason Ravnsborg faced 3 charges in connection with fatal crash

(Newser) - South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg will avoid a trial and take a plea deal for misdemeanor traffic charges in a crash last year in which he hit and killed a man who was walking along a rural highway, a prosecutor said Wednesday. Beadle County State’s Attorney Michael Moore,...

Virus-Defying Bikers Roar Into Sturgis

Rally begins, possibly drawing more people taking fewer virus precautions than last year

(Newser) - The South Dakota city of Sturgis, host of the famed annual motorcycle rally, is offering coronavirus tests, masks, and hand sanitizer to the hundreds of thousands of bikers rolling into town. But none of that is a conversation starter. "People here don't want to talk about COVID,"...

Victim Wanted to Die, South Dakota AG Claims

Jason Ravnsborg's defense says the man he struck and killed was suicidal

(Newser) - Jason Ravnsborg is really looking for an out. The South Dakota attorney general who struck and killed Joe Boever with his car back in September of 2020 is now claiming the victim wanted to die. Boever, whose glasses were found inside Ravnsborg’s car and whose lit flashlight was found...

South Dakota Is Sending Troops to Mexico Border
Donor Pays for State
to Send Troops to Border

Donor Pays for State to Send Troops to Border

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem announces National Guard deployment

(Newser) - South Dakota National Guard troops are being sent to Texas to help "secure" the border with Mexico, says Gov. Kristi Noem, the latest GOP governor to announce a border deployment. Florida, Iowa, and Nebraska are sending law enforcement officers, but Noem, a potential 2024 White House contender, says the...

More Fallout for S. Dakota Official Over Road Fatality

Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg's promotion in the Army Reserve is blocked

(Newser) - The US Army Reserve has blocked the promotion of South Dakota's attorney general because of his role in the death of a man who was struck while walking along a rural highway last year, per the AP . Jason Ravnsborg last month announced on social media that he was being...

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