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Local News Archives for 2020-07

Sobriety checkpoints scheduled for August

Sixteen sobriety checkpoints in 12 different counties are planned for August by the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.

 

The checkpoints are done each month in different counties as a way to discourage drivers from drinking and then driving.

 

August checkpoints are scheduled in the counties of: Charles Mix, Codington, Davison, Hamlin, Jackson, Lawrence, Lincoln, Meade, Minnehaha, Spink, Walworth and Yankton.

 

The checkpoints are funded by the South Dakota Office of Highway Safety and conducted by the South Dakota Highway Patrol with the help of local law enforcement. Both the Office of Highway Safety and the Highway Patrol are part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


Road closures planned for next Thursday in Aberdeen

Beginning at 8am on Thursday, August 6th, 2020 the following intersection will be closed to thru traffic for road work:

 

South Lawson Street & 15th Avenue SE

 

Motorists are advised to take alternate routes.  Work will be completed as quickly as possible.  Please call the Public Works office at 605-626-7010 for more information. 


Gov. Noem daughter Kennedy leaving government work to pursue MBA

Kennedy Noem, one of the daughter’s of South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has left her job with the South Dakota government and will be relocating to Tennessee to pursue a professional MBA.  She made the announcement on her personal Facebook page this week.  Kennedy served as a policy analyst for her mother’s administration during her time in Pierre.  Governor Noem received criticism for hiring her daughter straight out of college at South Dakota State and paying her what started at $40,000 right out of college and ended at $60,000 when the legislature approved state employees receive a 2.5 percent pay raise. 


Watertown's Lee Schoenbeck talks tribal checkpoints

(KWAT - Watertown, SD) The COVID-19 pandemic raised a dispute between Governor Noem and two Indian tribes in South Dakota—a dispute that remains unresolved.

 

The Cheyenne River Sioux and Oglala Sioux tribes set up coronavirus checkpoints on state and federal highways on the two reservations, which Governor Noem has contended are illegal.

 

State Senator Lee Shoenbeck of Watertown, who’s a lawyer, says this disagreement has lingered to a point where it’s now a stare down to see, “who’s toughest”…

 

 

 

 

Schoenbeck sees other faults in these checkpoints….

 

 

 

He also questions the locations of some of the checkpoints…

 

 

 

Bridger.The tribes have said they feel they have to be vigilant to protect tribal members who have underlying health problems, and rely on a fragile health care system.


Youth COVID-19 infections in South Dakota

As schools accross the state and nation continue try and return to in class learning this fall many are concerned about the potential spread of COVID-19 in children.  Research on the topic has been mixed, whether or not children are regular spreaders of the virus.

 

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem earlier this week spoke in Sioux Falls calling on schools to open in the fall...

 

 

 

 

 

State epidemeolgist Dr. Joshua Clayton gave some figures about the spread of COVID-19 in kids during a press conference Thursday.  According to Dr. Clayton as of Monday, 1,003 cases have been among children 0-19 years of age.  Further breakdown shows 322 of those have been between the ages of 0-9 and 737 among those 10-19. 

 

Dr. Clayton says there is very little difference in symptoms showing in children…

 

 

 

 

There have been outbreaks in children areas so far in South Dakota.  

 

The McCrossan Boys Ranch near Sioux Falls has closed its doors to the public due to an outbreak of COVID-19.  According to state health officials less than 15 people at the ranch have tested positive for the disease and a plan for mass testing at the ranch will happen in the coming days.  McCrossan is a non-profit, private organization which works with troubled boys between the ages of nine and 20. 

 

Cases of COVID-19 from Camp Judson in Keystone continue to climb.  According to health officials 61 people who attended the camp are now infected with COVID-19.  An estimated 328 people were at the camp at the time of the outbreak.  The cases range from ages 5 to 9 years old to 40 to 44 years old.  75 percent of the cases are teenagers.  


Nine individuals test positive for COVID-19 after attending athletic camps at Northern State

Eight students and one youth who attended an athletic camp at Northern State have tested positive for COVID-19.  According to the South Dakota Department of Health all those infected are experiencing mild or no symptoms, but contact tracing and an investigation into more cases is ongoing.  The camps in question include a volleyball camp July 20-21, a basketball camp July 23-24 and a soccer camp July 24th-26th.  Campus activities will continue at Northern as normal for the time being.  In a statement the University calls on individuals to do their part to help prevent spread of COVID-19 by wearing a mask and practicing good hygiene.


Pilot survives emergency landing in Hamlin county without injury

(KWAT - Watertown, SD) A pilot escaped injury after making an emergency landing in Hamlin County Wednesday afternoon.

 

Watertown dispatch got a call just before 3:00 p.m. that an emergency landing was being attempted south of Watertown, near Thomas.

 

Several agencies including the Hamlin County Sheriff’s Office, Hamlin County Emergency Management, South Dakota Highway Patrol, Game, Fish and Parks and the Codington County Sheriff’s Department were dispatched to look for the plane.

 

About an hour later, the airplane was located southwest of Castlewood.

 

The 27 year-old female pilot was checked over at the scene by Castlewood Ambulance.

 

The cause of the emergency landing was engine failure.


Hosmer man killed Monday in Skid Steer accident

The Walworth County Sheriff’s office reports a man died in Walworth County who was involved in a skid steer accident.  The incident happened Monday when a man was caught between a loader and the cab of a skid steer.  He was identified as a 65-year-old man from Hosmer, but his name was not released.  The incident remains under investigation. 


Police respond to stabbing in Aberdeen Tuesday

The Aberdeen Police Department responded to reports of a stabbing around 9:45 p.m. Tuesday.  According to a release from police the incident occurred in the 900 block of South State Street.  Upon arrival police found the victim who said the suspect in question had tried to break into his apartment.  The two had a confrontation and the male intruder ultimately stabbed him in the abdomen.  The victim was transported to Avera St. Luke’s where he underwent surgery and is expected to be released today.  Upon further investigation 30-year-old Abdihakim Ahmed Ismail of Aberdeen was arrested in the incident and charged with aggravated assault. 


Gov. Noem talks schools reopening in Sioux Falls Tuesday

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem spoke in Sioux Falls Tuesday about her administration’s goal to see school reopen this coming fall semester.  After meeting with teachers and parents Governor Noem took to the podium and gave prepared remarks then took questions.

 

According to Governor Noem it is important schools reopen for a number of reasons.  Those include a better quality of education for students, parents need students in schools so they can return to work, according to Noem the virus does not spread as much with children and more vulnerable students need a safe place to be.

 

Noem says the benefits of reopening out way the potential dangers…

 

 

 

 

Governor Noem is calling on districts to reopen come the fall and put measures in place that suits their specific needs, rather than dictation coming down from Pierre.  She also says she will not call for a mask mandate while in the classroom because that is not practical in her opinion…

 

 

 

 

There will be additional money made available for schools to help offset any costs to reopening according to Governor Noem.  Also, it is likely in the next round of federal stimulus out of Washington D.C. several billion dollars will be put aside to help schools reopen across the country.

 

Governor Noem also did not say what is an acceptable number of infections in a school district or a county to call off school.  She made that decision in the spring at the beginning of the pandemic, but says that will likely not happen again…

 


Department of ag warns against strange seeds from China

There have been nationwide reports of packages from China containing unsolicited seeds. Unsolicited seeds may contain invasive species, introduce diseases to native plants, or be harmful to livestock.

"The South Dakota Department of Agriculture (SDDA) has received reports of unsolicited seeds being mailed to South Dakotans,” said Lieutenant Governor Larry Rhoden. “We’re not sure the intent behind this activity, but I urge the public to refrain from planting these seeds as invasive species can have devastating effects on South Dakota agriculture."

Anyone receiving unsolicited seeds in the mail should do the following:

  • Do not plant the seeds
  • Save the seeds and packaging, including the mailing label
  • Contact the SDDA at 605.773.5425 or email agmail@state.sd.us with the following information:
    • Name
    • Phone number
    • Date received
    • Number of packages

The SDDA continues to monitor the situation and work with the United States Department of Agriculture for further guidance.
 
Agriculture is a major contributor to South Dakota’s economy, generating $32.5 billion in annual economic activity and employing over 132,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect, and preserve South Dakota agriculture for today and tomorrow. Visit us online at sdda.sd.gov or find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
 


State launches program to train out of work residents

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has announced the launching of UpSkill, a new program aimed at helping out of work South Dakotan’s re-train for new jobs in the work force.  The program offers 22 online certification programs in high-demand fields such as health care or manufacturing.  Upskill will begin this fall semester and be administered through the state’s four technical colleges.  This will be made available to South Dakotan’s at little or no cost.  For more information visit SDUpSkill.com.


One person killed in crop duster plane crash

One person was killed in a Douglas county plane crash Monday morning.  According to KMIT in Mitchell, the crashed happened before 11:00 a.m. near the intersection fo 404th avenue and 273rd street six miles northweset of Parkston. The plan has been identified as a crop dusting plan. The National Transporation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration have been notified and are investigating the crash.  This is an ongoing investigation and little more information has been released. 


Water to be shut off in parts of Aberdeen Tuesday

Beginning at approximately 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday July 28th water will be shut off in the following area to replace a water valve: North State Street from 10th avenue NE to 14th ave NE.  The public works department suggests that residents in the affected area collect and store water for personal and restroom use.  Water is estimated to remain off all day.  Work will be completed as quickly as possible. 


67-year-old Pierre man drowns in the Missouri River

(Dakota Radio Group News - Pierre, SD) A 67-year-old man from Pierre has died after he went into the Missouri River while unloading his boat at the Fort Pierre boat ramp this (Mon.) morning.

 

Stanley County Chief Deputy Sheriff Greg Swanson says David Lee Braun was pronounced dead at Avera St. Mary’s Hospital in Pierre.

 

Upon investigation, Swanson says a local resident talked with Braun when he arrived at the boat ramp by himself around 6:30am. While unloading, Swanson says it appears the boat got away from Braun, who went into the water to try to catch it.

 

Swanson says depending on the amount of water being released through the Oahe Dam, the water can be around 10 feet deep in that area and have a strong current. He says rescuers were on scene for a little over half an hour when a Pierre Volunteer Fire Department Rescue Squad diver recovered Braun’s body about 15 yards from the ramp. He was not wearing a life jacket.

 

Rescuers were called shortly before 8am after receiving a 911 call because an unattended pickup and trailer were at the boat ramp and an empty boat was visible floating downstream.

 

Also aiding in the response were AMR Ambulance, the Fort Pierre Volunteer Fire Department, the Stanley County Coroner’s Office, the US Army Corps of Engineers, the South Dakota Highway Patrol and the state Game Fish & Parks Department.

 

This is the second drowning in the Pierre/Fort Pierre area of the Missouri River this month.

 

37-year-old Lee Weber jumped into the river July 3 to save his eight-year-old son who had fallen from a moving boat. The child was saved by a nearby boater. Weber wasn’t wearing a life jacket and was swept away by the river’s current. His body was found the afternoon of July 9.


Flags to be displayed Monday to honor Korean War Armistice Day

Flags will be flying today in honor of the Korean War Armistice Day according to the Exchange Club of Aberdeen.  The Korean War lasted from June 25th 1950 to July 27th 1953, claiming the lives of 2 to 3 million civilians, 36,574 Americans and wounding several hundred thousand more.  The war was fought between North Korea with the backing of China and the Soviet Union and South Korea with the support of the United Nations, but principally the United States.  The war ended with a cease fire instead of a traditional surrender which still holds to this day with the Korean Demilitarized Zone.   


SD universities worry about COVID-19 outbreak when returning to campus

The plan to return to face-to-face teaching and learning at colleges in SouthDakota in August is causing great concern among faculty and staff. Here isSouth Dakota News Watch reporter Bart Pfankuch with a report.Despite extensive preparation and a new mandate that masks be wornindoors, many university employees in South Dakota are worried thatbringing thousands of young adults from across the state, country and worldtogether in campus classrooms, residence halls and buildings will lead toCOVID-19 outbreaks among the staff, students or their families.

 

A petition seeking to give students and faculty the right to decide on theirown to teach and learn remotely has garnered more than 100 signatures.Many are concerned that even if protections against the virus are present inclassrooms and campus buildings, students will create risks on their own byliving active and social lifestyles, gathering in groups and by not takingpreventive steps against spreading the virus in their personal time.

 

The Board of Regents, which governs the university system, announced onMay 1 that all six universities and two special schools in the system wouldreturn to in-person teaching on August 19...and on July 22, they voted torequire masks indoors.Still, many are worried that it won’t be enough to protect students andfaculty against the spread of the virus.

 

Regents CEO Brian Maher said he is comfortable with the safety precautionscolleges are taking, including spreading out desks in classes, increasingcleaning and use of sanitizer, isolating anyone who shows symptoms andallowing employees with serious medical conditions to teach remotely.Maher also notes that officials will keep a close eye on the virus once classesbegin and will not hesitate to change course, including shifting back to onlineteaching, if outbreaks do occur.

 

for more on this story visit sdnewswatch.com. 


Senate challenger Dan Ahlers talks campaigning during a pandemic

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) Mounting a statewide campaign in the face of a pandemic is a challenge.

 

Dan Ahlers of Dell Rapids is the democratic candidate for the Senate and will face republican incumbent Senator Mike Rounds in November.

 

Ahlers says he has had some time to adjust...

 

 

 

Ahlers says he was able to make some personal contacts before the pandemic shutdown...

 

 

 

Ahlers says getting his message out effectively is also a challenge...

 

 

 

Ahlers is a former legislator and interim director of the Dell Rapids Chamber of Commerce.


State announces first case of West Nile virus in 2020

A McCook County resident is South Dakota’s first human West Nile virus (WNV) case of the season, the state Health Department reported today.

 

“Active transmission of West Nile virus is occurring in South Dakota and people need to protect themselves, especially during evening outdoor activities,” said Dr. Joshua Clayton, State Epidemiologist for the department.

 

Clayton said South Dakota has historically had a disproportionately high number of WNV cases compared to other states and he encouraged residents to reduce their risk by taking the following actions:

 

  • Apply mosquito repellents (DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol, 2-undecanone or IR3535) to clothes and exposed skin.
  • Reduce mosquito exposure by wearing pants and long sleeves when outdoors.
  • Limit time outdoors from dusk to dawn when Culex mosquitoes, the primary carrier of WNV in South Dakota, are most active.
  • Get rid of standing water that gives mosquitoes a place to breed.
    • Regularly change water in bird baths, ornamental fountains and pet dishes.
    • Drain water from flowerpots and garden containers.
    • Discard old tires, buckets, cans or other containers that can hold water.
    • Clean rain gutters to allow water to flow freely.
  • Support local mosquito control efforts.

These precautions are especially important for people at high risk for WNV, including individuals over 50, pregnant women, organ transplant patients, individuals with cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure or kidney disease, and those with a history of alcohol abuse. People with severe or unusual headaches should see their physicians.

 

The state’s first human case was reported in 2001. Since then, South Dakota has reported 2,613 human cases and 46 deaths.

 

Visit the department’s website at westnile.sd.gov for more information about WNV.


Brown County Sheriff investigating drowning death of 2-year-old girl

The Brown County Sheriff’s office is investigating the drowning death of a 2-year-old girl.  According to authorities, the child died while swimming by the Ordway dam Monday evening.  The Ordway dam is about six miles north of Aberdeen on 125th street.  The sheriff’s office believes the girl was playing in the water while the mother and her boyfriend were fishing.  She then disappeared  and was found unresponsive when first responders were called around 7:45 p.m.


State supreme court upholds long sentence for man found guilty of second degree murder at 17

The South Dakota Supreme Court Thursday announced its decision a state circuit court judge did not act improperly giving a long sentence to a 17-year-old convicted of second-degree murder.  Judge Heidi Linngren was found in the right unanimously by the state’s highest court the 90-year sentence she handed down to Carlos Quevedo was not disproportionate.  Quevedo pleaded guilty to stabbing Kasie Lord of Rapid City to death.  She was a convenience store clerk trying to stop him and an accomplice from stealing beer.  He is eligible for parole at the age of 62. 


Aberdeen police arrest burglary suspect

Aberdeen Police have arrested a woman believed to be involved in numerous burglaries in the area of 10thy and South State Street.  According to a release from police, officers arrested 25-year-old Bailey Hunter Lipp of Aberdeen following an investigation into a host of burglaries during the overnight hours of July 20th.  Lipp has been charged with possession of a controlled substance, entering or remaining in a building, criminal entry of motor vehicle and an arrest warrant for theft. 


SD Board of Regents will require masks on campus this coming fall semester

The South Dakota Board of Regents decided Wednesday masks will be mandatory in all public spaces at South Dakota’s public universities once students return for the fall semester.  This mask mandate will last for at least the first 30 days and is part of the board’s four-level approach to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.  The leveled approach includes face coverings at all levels, but requirements are relaxed as the level moves from four to one.  The protections apply to all students, staff, faculty and campus visitors. 


Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz orders masks must be worn indoors

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz announced Wednesday mandatory mask wearing in stores, public buildings and other indoor spaces where people gather.  According to the Governor’s office he will use special powers granted to him under the emergency declaration which he extended in July. 

 

The decision is to continue the state’s battle against COVID-19 and has been recommended by health experts on a state level and nationally. According to Gov. Walz, the worst might be yet to come...
 

 

 

 

 

According to Gov. Walz, wearing masks is the most efficiant way to get the state back to normal the quickest...

 

 

 

Gov. Walz compared the mask mandate to other laws passed recently and a while ago by the state...

 


Senator Thune defends calls to fill potential supreme court vacancy

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) South Dakota Senator John Thune says depending on the timing, he would support filling an opening on the US Supreme Court.

               

In late 2016, the Senate did not take up the nomination of Merrick Garland to the Court by President Obama. Thune says the election situation was different then...

 

 

 

 

Thune says if an opening occurred after the election, that could change the circumstances...

 

 

 

 

87 year old Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is undergoing treatment for a reoccurrence of pancreatic cancer. She has said she intends to stay on the court.

 


Mitchell woman accused of killing 5-year-old boy pleads insanity

(KMIT - Mitchell, SD) A Mitchell woman accused of killing a 5-year old boy pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to several counts on Tuesday.  21-year old Julia Carter was indicted earlier this month on a charge of second-degree murder and alternate counts of first-degree manslaughter, aggravated assault, and child abuse.  Her attorneys requested a private investigator with a budget of up to $5,000 for the case, which Judge Chris Giles granted.  A motions hearing was scheduled for September 8th.


State activists pursuing Medicaid expansion via the ballot in 2022

South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg has released two official explainers about an initiated measure and constitutional amendment which activists are trying to get on the ballot in 2022.  The two measures would expand Medicaid coverage in South Dakota. 

 

One of the activists involved in this effort is one time senate candidate Rick Weiland who says this is about helping people who don’t have healthcare get coverage…

 

 

 

 

Medicaid is a program shared by states and the federal government to help healthcare coverage to low income people, people who do not get coverage through their employer, or disabled people.  When the Affordable Care Act was passed it gave states the opportunity to expand who is covered under Medicaid and that coverage would be provided by the federal government.

 

Since then the South Dakota legislature has refused to expand Medicaid and remains just one of 13 states in the nation not to do so. 

 

Weiland says Medicaid expansion has been a big success in red and blue states alike…

 

 

 

 

Weiland says not only would Medicaid expansion provide health insurance to at least an estimated 55,000 South Dakotans currently uninsured, it would also help sure up the rural healthcare system which has been struggling for years…

 


Brown county commission chooses not to close southern dump site for now

The Brown County Commission chose to extend the life of the county dump site on the south edge of Aberdeen.  

 

The commission was looking at closing the site due to cost and its location near the rural fire department.  Residents chose to speak out against the closure at the county commission meeting Tuesday.

 

In the end, the commission chose to keep the site open until July 1st 2021 while an alternative can be found. 


Rapid City man charged with first attempted degree murder in Monday shooting

(KOTA - Rapid City, SD) Police officials say that a Rapid City man was arrested and charged with Attempted First Degree Murder, after an early-morning shooting on Monday.  

 

29-year-old Arlen Hatten was located and arrested shortly after he allegedly shot two people at a residence at Brookdale Estates on East Highway 44.  

 

Police were called to the 1700 block of East Highway 44 at 6:45 Monday on a report of shots fired.  Witnesses said they saw a silver car leave the residence after the shooting, and they identified Hatten as the shooter.  

 

Police located the car at 5th and Omaha, where two of the four people inside had severe gunshot wounds.  They were taken to Monument Health.  Hatten was located and arrested by police a short time later at a business at Exit 61 on I-90.    

 

Police say that the investigation is continuing.  

 


Minnesota state legislature passes sweeping police reforms Tuesday

The Minnesota state legislature passed sweeping police reforms Tuesday two months after George Floyd was murdered at the hands of Minneapolis police.  The package passed the house via a 102-29 vote just before midnight Monday while the Senate followed shortly after with a 60-7 vote.  The legislation will now make its way to Governor Tim Walz desk where he is expected to sign it into law.  The legislation includes new police accountability measures, bans neck restraints as a means to subdue a suspect and outlaws officers from taking part in quote “warrior style” training which teaches officers to view all encounters with suspects as inherently dangerous. 


Welcome home planned in Aberdeen for National Guard deployed

A welcome home ceremony is scheduled for 110 soldiers with the South Dakota Army National Guard's Alpha Battery, 1-147th Field Artillery Battalion and 147th Forward Support Company at the Civic Center in Aberdeen on Saturday, July 25 at 2:30 p.m.

 

The soldiers are returning home after serving on a 10-month deployment to Europe in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve, which enhances the U.S. deterrence posture, increase the readiness and responsiveness of U.S. forces in Europe, and supports the collective defense and security of U.S. allies and partners.

 

The ceremony will be limited to unit soldiers and their family members, as well as SDNG leadership, to allow for health and social distancing guidelines. The ceremony will be live streamed for public viewing via Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/SouthDakotaNationalGuard.

 

Planned speakers for the ceremony include Gov. Kristi Noem, Maj. Gen. Jeff Marlette, SDNG adjutant general, and Capt. Craig Evenson, Alpha Battery commander.

 

The Aberdeen-based Alpha Battery is equipped with the Multiple Launch Rocket System, or MLRS, and provides artillery support to a brigade, division, corps or coalition task force. The Watertown-based Forward Support Company is a multifunctional logistics unit which provides supply and maintenance support.

 

The unit arrived in the United States July 8 and have been completing demobilization requirements at Fort Hood, Texas, before returning to South Dakota.


Hub City Inc. to close at the end of 2021

The Aberdeen American News reports Hub City Incorporated will close its doors at the end of 2021.  Hub City Inc. has a history of over 125 years of operation and is a subsidiary of the Regal-Beloit Corporation.  Plant Manager Patrick Chamberlain confirmed the news to the paper, but no formal statement has been issued by management as  of Tuesday morning. 


One person killed, another injured in Monday afternoon crash near Sioux Falls

One person died and another person was injured Monday afternoon in a two-vehicle crash near Sioux Falls.

 

Names of the two drivers are not yet being released pending notification of family members. They were the only people involved.

 

A 2020 Ford F150 pickup was eastbound on 85th Street and collided in the uncontrolled intersection with a 2007 Sterling LT9000 truck that was northbound on Sycamore Avenue. The pickup remained on its wheels while the truck came to rest on its driver’s side.

 

The 85-year-old male driver of the pickup was not wearing a seatbelt. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

 

Sustaining serious non-life threatening injuries was the 47-year-old male driver of the truck. He was wearing a seat belt and was taken by ambulance to a Sioux Falls hospital.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.

 


One time Democratic gubernatorial candidate Billie Sutton and wife Kelsea lose newborn baby girl

Former state lawmaker from Burke South Dakota and one time Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Billie Sutton and his wife Kelsea lost a newborn daughter last week.  According to the child’s obituary with Clausen Funeral Home, Lenore Antonia Sutton was born July 8th at 11:01 a.m. and died peacefully in her parents arms July 15th 2020.  A cause of death was not released.  The Sutton have asked anyone interested to instead of sending flowers, make a donation in Lenore’s honor to the Burke Community Foundation at PO Box 376.  In the obituary the family asks for this because the plan was to raise Lenore in Burke where the Sutton’s call home. 


Name released in two vehicle accident near Estelline

An Estelline, S.D., man died Thursday afternoon in a crash involving a semi-truck and an utility terrain vehicle (UTV) north of Estelline.

 

Both vehicles were northbound on 465th Avenue. A loaded semi-truck and trailer entered the southbound lane to pass the UTV. While the semi-truck was attempting to pass the UTV, the UTV suddenly moved into the southbound lane. The semi-truck attempted to avoid the crash by swerving into the west ditch, but it struck the left front corner of the UTV.

 

Scott Thompson, the 52-year-old driver of UTV, was not wearing a seat belt or helmet. He was thrown from the vehicle and later died from his injuries at the Watertown hospital.

 

Levi Tschetter of Castlewood, S.D. was the 79-year-old male driver of the semi-truck. He was wearing his seat belt and was not injured.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


Dollar Tree/Family Dollar no longer to require customers to wear masks

While stores like WalMart, Target, Menards and many more major retailers are now requiring customers to wear masks while shopping, a select number of stores are going the opposite direction.  Dollar Tree and Family Dollar has announced it will no longer require shoppers to wear masks, unless mandated by law in that area.  Aberdeen has a dollar tree on the east side of town and a family dollar on sixth avenue in the west central part of town. 


Florida man pleads not guilty to attacking Dallas Goedert at the Zoo Bar

A Florida man accused of attacking Britton native and Philadelphia Eagles Tight end Dallas Goedert has pleaded not guilty to simple assault charges.  29-year-old Kyle Douglas Hadala is accused of sucker punching Goedert at the Zoo Bar in Aberdeen during an incident June 20th.  The charges are a misdemeanor and a trial date has not yet been set.  Shortly after the attack video surveillance footage of the incident leaked onto social media.  According to a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Goedert asked the group of people to stop saying disrespectful things during the night out, leading to the altercation. 


Water to be shut off in parts of Aberdeen Monday

Beginning at approximately 8am on Monday, July 20, 2020 water will be off in the following area for work on a water valve:

 

South 3rd Street from 15th Avenue SW to 17th Avenue SW

 

The Public Works department suggests that residents in the affected area collect and store water for personal and restroom use.  Water is estimated to remain off most of the day.  Work will be completed as quickly as possible.


Expanded unemployment benefits expire next week

The expanded unemployment benefits created by Congress when it passed the CARES act at the beginning of the pandemic are set to expire next week. The aid is scheduled to end July 31st unless congress does something to extend the benefits. Those expanded benefits include an additional $600 a week during the pandemic. Most Republicans do not want to extend the aid further for fear they discourage unemployed individuals from looking for work, while most Democrats fear cutting the aid off would cause financial hardship for millions. There are currently 32 million Americans collecting unemployment benefits according to the Labor Department.   

 


State of South Dakota ends fiscal year with $19 million budget surplus

South Dakota closed the 2020 budget year on June 30 with a surplus of $19.1 million, Governor Kristi Noem announced today. Although total revenue finished $7.9 million lower than adopted estimates, the state general fund budget ended with expenditures approximately $27.2 million lower than budgeted. The state spent $74.8 million in Coronavirus Relief Funds in fiscal year 2020.

 

“Despite the challenges with COVID-19, South Dakota remains in a strong financial position,” said Governor Noem. “As many states closed their economies, I trusted South Dakotans to make the right decisions for themselves and their loved-ones. Our future remains bright because we kept our state open for business and we live within our means.”

 

Of the $27.2 million of 2020 general fund reversions, $23.9 million came from executive branch agencies, $1.8 million came from the Board of Regents, $0.9 million came from the Unified Judicial System, and $0.6 million came from the Legislature and constitutional offices. The unspent funds in fiscal year 2020 represent just 1.6 percent of the total general fund budget.

 

Total general fund revenue for fiscal year 2020 was lower than legislative adopted estimates in February by $7.9 million, or 0.5 percent. Sales and use tax, which is the state’s largest revenue source, finished $11.8 million below estimates but still grew 4.6 percent over the prior fiscal year. A combination of all other sources of general fund revenue finished the fiscal year $3.9 million above legislative estimates.

 

By law, the fiscal year 2020 surplus of $19.1 million was transferred to the budget reserve fund. The state’s budget reserve fund now has a balance of $149.4 million, and the general revenue replacement fund has a balance of $44.0 million, for a total reserve of $193.4 million.


Poll shows Gov. Noem has over 60 percent approval

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem is enjoying a large amount of support in a recently released poll.  The poll was conducted by Public Opinion Strategies and surveyed 500 South Dakotan’s via land line and cell phone.  The poll shows 62 percent of South Dakota voters approve of Governor Noem.  The margin of error is 4.4 percent.  The poll was conducted in late June.  Democratic state party chair Randy Seiler questioned the legitimacy of the poll to South Dakota Public Broadcasting. 


Aberdeen Police looking for missing teen

The Aberdeen Police Department are asking for the public’s help in locating a runaway teenager.  According to a post on the police department’s Facebook page, authorities are trying to lake Kaysha Heath.  She is described as a 16 years old, 5’4, 210 pounds, reddish-brown hair and last seen Tuesday July 14th at 8:00 p.m.  She is believed to have been wearing black pants and possession of a yellow backpack.  A picture of her can be found at Dakotabroadcasting.com.  If you have any information on her whereabouts you are urged to contact dispatch at 626-7911. 


Water hydrant flow testing to take place in Aberdeen today

Beginning at approximately 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday July 14th weather permitting the Aberdeen Fire Department will begin flow-testing fire hydrants in the following area:  From Railroad Avnue North to city limits, between North Dakota Street and North Roosevelt Street.  The fire department will be opening hydrants and residents will experience some water pressure changes and in some instances the water will be disturbed to the point of discoloring or appearing rusty.  The project will continue until completed in these areas of the city until all hydrants have been tested. 


"Mythbusters" cast member Grant Imahara dead at 49

Grant Imahara, one of the cast members of the popular Discover channel show “Mythbusters” has died at the age of 49.  His death was announced in a statement by the Discovery Channel.  No cause of death was given with the announcement, but according to the Hollywood reporter, Imahara died as a result of a brain aneurysm.  The show debuted in 2003 and has gone on for 17 seasons and 296 episodes, today it can be seen on the Science Channel.  Imahara was also known for his work on the Netflix series “White Rabbit Project.” 


Police chase in Watertown leads to drug bust

Authorities in Watertown say a car chase led to a drug bust in a home within the city.  Police responded to a report of a vehicle driving recklessly around 2:00 a.m. Saturday.  The vehicle took off once approached by police and a chase ensued.  The vehicle crashed eventually and police arrested 28-year-old Elizabeth Mesa of St. Paul Minnesota.  Further investigation determined the car was stolen.  Police also found an ounce of methamphetamine, small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.  The driver of the vehicle 33-year-old Richard Balsimo of St. Paul Minnesota eventually led officers to a home where they found a half pound of marijuana and meth.  27-year-old Travis Storbakken of Waterotwn and 25-year-old Katie Barns of Watertown were both arrested on drug charges as well.   


Brown county courthouse experiencing communication problems

The Brown County courthouse wants people to know it is having computer and phone issues at the moment.  Contacting offices in the annex will be difficult via the phone or computer at this time.  If you have an issue that needs addressing you are urged to visit the courthouse in person.  If you need to contact the sheriff’s department they do have a working phone at 626-7101.


Brown county courthouse experiencing communication problems

The Brown County courthouse wants people to know it is having computer and phone issues at the moment.  Contacting offices in the annex will be difficult via the phone or computer at this time.  If you have an issue that needs addressing you are urged to visit the courthouse in person.  If you need to contact the sheriff’s department they do have a working phone at 626-7101.



The band "Great White" apologizes for North Dakota show

The metal band Great White has issued a formal apology for a concert the band put on in Dickinson North Dakota which had no social distancing of any kind and did not require masks. The band drew criticism on social media following its performance at Dickinson Summer Nights concert series. The band issued a statement Saturday saying they were simply fulfilling a contractual agreement. The North Dakota Department of Health recommends social distancing and masks, but does not require them.   


State spends more than $1.5 million for Mt. Rushmore event, tourism says money and advertising made up for it

More numbers are coming out in regards to the cost of President Donald Trump’s visit to Mt. Rushmore and the celebration west river.  According to the South Dakota Department of Tourism, the state spent approximately $1.5 million to put on the event, which included $350,000 for the fireworks out of the state’s future fund.  The rest went towards, security, transportation, and advertising for the event all coming out of tourism’s budget.  The Department also says visitors spent approximately $2 million which comes out to about $160,000 in tax revenue.  It also estimated the media coverage for the event was worth approximately $22 million.   


Name released of Doland woman killed in two-vehicle accident near Clark

A Doland, S.D., woman has been identified as the person who died in a two-vehicle crash that occurred late Sunday night east of Clark.

 

A 2016 International TR Semi Truck and Trailer was making a left turn onto U.S. Highway 212 from 428th Avenue to go east. A 2007 Town and Country Chrysler van, which was westbound on U.S. Highway 212, collided with the semi truck.

 

Nancy Berendes, the 47-year-old driver of the van, had to be extricated from the vehicle and later died of her injuries at the Watertown hospital. She was wearing a seat belt.

 

A 15-year-old male passenger was taken to the Watertown hospital with serious non-life threatening injuries. He was not wearing a seat belt.

 

Kianna Gause of Norcross, GA was the 24-year-old female driver of the semi truck. She was wearing a seat belt and was not injured.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


Day county sheriff deputy cleared of any wrongdoing in discharge of a weapon

(KXLG - Watertown, SD) The South Dakota Attorney General has cleared a Day County Sheriff's Deputy in the shooting of a Webster man on June 2nd, 2020. Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg and the Division of Criminal Investigation on Thursday, released the summary into the shooting of 46-year-old, Michael Andreas Beckham.  

 

The shooting occurred around 4:00 PM on June 2nd when a Webster police officer responded to a 911 call from a male, later identified as Beckham, who making irrational claims and threatening to harm himself. Beckham was in Webster driving erratically in his vehicle and refused to stop for law enforcement. A vehicle pursuit left the city limits of Webster and personnel from the Day County Sheriff's Office became involved.   

 

According to the report, during the pursuit, officers observed Beckham with a handgun which he pointed at his own head multiple times while driving.   

 

Following the deployment of a spike strip and the eventual blocking of the road by patrol vehicles, Beckham was stopped at which time he continued a verbal exchange with authorities and pointed his weapon at officers.   

 

During the exchange, a shot was fired by Beckham at which time an officer with the Day County Sheriff's Office drew his service weapon and returned fire. Beckham received injuries to his torso, arm, and head.   

 

He was transported to Avera hospital in Aberdeen for treatment. South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg said, “It is my conclusion that the actions taken by the officer of the Day County Sheriff's Office were justified. I would like to thank the officers of the Sheriff's Office and the Webster Police Department for their complete cooperation in this investigation.”   

 

The identity of the officer involved in the shooting was not released in the report. 


Body of missing Pierre man found in Missouri River

The body of a missing Pierre man has been recovered from the Missouri River Thursday according to the Stanley County Sheirff’s office.  37-year-old Lee Weber was found around 4:00 p.m. on the Stanley County side of the river between a pair of bridges that cross the Missouri River between Pierre and Fort Pierre.  Weber went missing Friday after his 8-year-old son had fallen in the water off a boat and Weber had jumped in after him to save him.  A nearby watercraft managed to save the child, but Weber was carried away by the current who was not wearing a life at the time.  At least 18 state agencies at one time were looking for Weber’s body. 

 

 


COVID-19 leads to coin shortage in the US

COVID-19 has affected almost every aspect of our lives across the globe, including experiencing shortages in toilet paper, hand sanitizer, cleaning products, meat products and now coins.  According to the United States Federal Reserve, the coronavirus is causing a coin shortage, due to a number of factors.  First, with businesses closed for a time the flow of coins stopped with it, also the US Mint production of coins has decreased due to the virus as well.  To address this issue, the federal reserve has created a US Coin task force to address the problem.  The committee plans on releasing its first recommendations for action by the end of July. 


Citywide mosquito spray scheduled for Thursday night

The City of Aberdeen has scheduled a city-wide ground spray for mosquitoes on Thursday, July 9th between the hours of 9:00 pm and 1:30 am. 

 

The adulticiding equipment is noisy and travels at 10 mph.  The mosquito control trucks are identified and travel with a flashing yellow light. To ensure spray effectiveness during the spraying operations, the wind must be 15 mph or less and no inclement weather present.  Winds higher than 15 mph or inclement weather will result in the spray being suspended until conditions improve. 

For more information, contact Aberdeen Mosquito Control Program at 626.7015


Search continues for 37-year-old Pierre man who went missing trying to save his son on Lake Oahe

(KCCR - Pierre, SD) The search for a missing 37 year-old Pierre man continues in the Missouri River.  The Stanley County Sheriff’s Office says officials are reducing the size of the search after talking it over with Lee Weber’s family.  Weber, the Chief Deputy for the Hughes County Sheriff’s Office, dove into the river Friday afternoon after his eight year-old son fell off a moving boat.  The child was rescued by nearby boaters while Weber was swept downstream by the river’s powerful current.  Searches for Weber have been continual since then.  Officials used approximately 22 boats, 50 people drones and the Highway Patrol airplane Wednesday looking for Weber.  The search has covered 15 miles of the river from Diver’s point, south to Antelope Creek, a distance of 15 miles.  The reduced search capacity will involve boats from the Pierre Rescue Squad and drones from Hughes/Stanley County Emergency Management and the Pierre Police Department.  The public is asked to be alert for possible sighting of Weber while near the River.  Anyone with information should contact Pierre police at 773-4710.  A GoFundMe account has been set up by friends of Weber.  A link to that page is posted with this story on todayskccr.com.  


Health officials warn of possible COVID-19 exposure at Mobridge 4th of July celebration

State Health officials announced Wednesday, July 8th, that an individual who attended the Sitting Bull Stampede Rodeo in Mobridge has tested positive for COVID-19.

 

The individual attended the event while able to transmit the virus to others on these dates and times:

  • June 30th from 5 p.m. -7 p.m.
  • July 1st from 5 p.m.- 7 p.m.

 

Due to the risk of exposure, individuals who attended the event during the specified dates and times should monitor for symptoms for 14 days.

 

A CDC screening tool is available at COVID.SD.GOV, which can help recommend when to call your medical provider if you develop symptoms.

 

State Health officials remind all South Dakotans to:

·        Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

·        Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue.

·        Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

·        Refrain from touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

·        Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects.

·        Individuals at higher risk for severe COVID-19 illness, such as older adults and people who have chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease, should take actions to reduce their risk of exposure.

 

If you develop symptoms:

·        Call your health care provider immediately.

·        Individuals who are concerned they have COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider via phone before going to a clinic or hospital to prevent spread in healthcare facilities.

·        Avoid contact with other people.

·        Follow the directions of your provider and public health officials.


South Dakota's GDP second least drop in the nation for first fiscal quarter

South Dakota’s economy was the second least impacted in the nation for the first quarter of 2020 according to the Noem administration.  In a release, the Bureau of Economic Analysis estimates that South Dakota’s gross domestic product or GDP, dipped by just 2.2 percent from January to March.  The only state which saw less decline than South Dakota was Nebraska at 1.3 percent.  The state’s other neighbors North Dakota’s GDP shrunk by 2.6 percent and Minnesota shrunk 4.0.  Governor Noem gave credit to the people of South Dakota in a release for these positive numbers. 


Road work planned through Thursday in Aberdeen

Beginning on Tuesday July 7th the following road will be closed to thru traffic for road work:  17th Avenue SE from South State Street to South Herret Street.  Work is expected to last thru Thursday July 9th.  Motorists are advised to take alternate routes until the work is completed. 


Potential COVID-19 exposure in Gary, SD

State Health officials announced Tuesday, July 7th, that an individual who attended a street dance in Gary has tested positive for COVID-19.

 

The individual attended the event while able to transmit the virus to others on these dates and times:

 

  • 10 p.m. July 4th through 2 a.m. July 5th

 

Due to the risk of exposure, individuals who attended the event during the specified dates and times should monitor for symptoms for 14 days.

 

A CDC screening tool is available at COVID.SD.GOV, which can help recommend when to call your medical provider if you develop symptoms.

 

State Health officials remind all South Dakotans to:

·         Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

·         Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue.

·         Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

·         Refrain from touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

·         Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects.

·         Individuals at higher risk for severe COVID-19 illness, such as older adults and people who have chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease, should take actions to reduce their risk of exposure.

 

If you develop symptoms:

·         Call your health care provider immediately.

·         Individuals who are concerned they have COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider via phone before going to a clinic or hospital to prevent spread in healthcare facilities.

·         Avoid contact with other people.

·         Follow the directions of your provider and public health officials.


Gov. Noem tests negative for COVID-19 again

South Dakota Governor has again tested negative for COVID-19 according to her administration’s communication director Ian Fury.  Fury tweeted out the negative test results Tuesday evening.  This is welcome news to many as Noem had potentially been exposed to the virus during the July 3rd celebration at Mt. Rushmore.  Noem could be seen hugging and sitting close to Kimberly Gilfoy, Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend, who tested positive for the virus while visiting South Dakota. 

 

 


Gettysburg city council votes to remove confederate flag from police patch and more

The Gettysburg South Dakota city council Monday night decided to remove the Confederate battle flag from its police vehicles, buildings and patches.  The council had discussed the removal of the flag at last month’s meeting, heard from constituents and ultimately decided to remove the imagery Monday.  Gettysburg takes its name from Gettysburg Pennsylvania, the location of a major battle during the American Civil War.  The use of Confederate iconography had again been brought to light following calls for racial justice after the murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police.  Floyd’s uncle Selwyn Jones is a resident of Gettysburg and spoke at the council meeting asking for the flag to be removed. 


Hyrdant flow testing to take place Wednesday

Beginning at approximately 8:00 a.m. Wednesday July 8th weather permitting the Aberdeen Fire Department will be flow testing fire hydrants in the following areas: From Railroad Avenue North to City limits, between North 5th street and west city limits.  The fire department will be opening hydrants and residents will experience some water pressure changes and in some instances the water will be disturbed to the point of discoloring or appearing rusty.  The project will continue until completed in these areas of the city until all hydrants have been tested.  Any questions contact the public works department at 626-7010. 


Ronayne named deputy mayor for 2020-21

The Aberdeen City Council elected a deputy mayor at its council meeting Monday evening.  After a short process, Councilman Rob Ronayne was elected deputy mayor for one year which runs from July 6th to the council’s first meeting in July 2021.  Ronayne was nominated along with Councilman Alan Johnson.  In the end, the vote was tied with Ronayne, Rux, Remily, and Langer voting for Ronayne and Councilmen Johnson, Reinbold, Rife and mayor Shaunaman voting for Johnson.  A coin flip was then conducted to see who would win and Ronayne came out the winner.


Ethanol plant damaged by storms over 4th of July at Mina

(KWAT - Watertown, SD) The CEO of Glacial Lakes Energy says one of their ethanol plants was, “in the direct line of fire” from tornadic storms that rolled through northeast South Dakota on Independence Day.

 

Jim Seurer says the storm hit the GLE ethanol plant in Mina around seven o’clock Saturday night…

 

 

 

 

Seurer says the plan was operational when the storm hit, with a small number of workers there….

 

 

 

 

 

He says they have insurance which will cover some of the damage…

 

 

 

 

The National Weather Service has already confirmed one tornado in the area of the Mina plant. That was an EF-2 twister with winds estimated up to 135 miles an hour.


Road closures planned for Aberdeen Tuesday

Weather permitting beginning at approximately 7:00 a.m. Tuesday July 7th, the following road will be closed to thru traffic for road work: 3rd avenue SE from South Harrison to South Boyd Street.  Work will be completed as quickly as possible.  Motorists are advised to use alternate routes until the work is completed. 


One person killed in two vehicle crash near Clark Sunday

One person died and another was injured in a two-vehicle crash that occurred late Sunday night east of Clark.

 

Names of the three people involved in the crash are not being released pending notification of family members.  

 

A 2016 International TR Semi Truck and Trailer was making a left turn onto U.S. Highway 212 from 428th Avenue to go east. A 2007 Town and Country Chrysler van, which was westbound on U.S. Highway 212, collided with the semi truck.

 

The 47-year-old female driver of the van had to be extricated and later died of her injuries at the Watertown hospital. She was wearing a seat belt.

 

A 15-year-old male passenger was taken to the Watertown hospital with serious non-life threatening injuries. He was not wearing a seat belt.

 

The 24-year-old female driver of the semi truck was not injured. She was wearing a seat belt.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


Federal judge says Dakota Access Pipeline must shutdown for environmental review

A federal judge has ordered the Dakota Access Pipeline be shutdown until further notice to conduct further environmental review.  US District Judge James Boasberg announced his decision Monday and said though the disruption would be significant it is necessary.  The Dakota Access Pipeline has been moving oil from North Dakota through South Dakota for three years, but has been controversial this entire time under federal environmental law. 


Country music star Charlie Daniels dies from a stroke Monday

Country music legend Charlie Daniels passed away Monday at the age of 83.  His publicist confirmed his death Monday after Daniels suffered a stroke.  Daniels was the lead singer of the band which shared his name, the Charlie Daniels Band and was known for his number one hit “The Devil Went Down to Georgia.”  Charlie Daniels was a member of at least four music hall of fames and was scheduled to perform at the South Dakota State Fair this year on September 4th


Tornado touches down on the 4th of July northwest of Aberdeen

The National Weather Service in Aberdeen confirmed a tornado touched down on the fourth of July northwest of Wetonka.  Wetonka is located in McPherson county, 27 miles northwest of Aberdeen.

 

Touchdown was at about 7:35 p.m. Saturday and destroyed some buildings at the Grasslands Hutterite Colony according to Mike Connelly with the National Weather Service...

 

 

 

The tornado was an EF-2 on the Fujita scale which puts it at winds of 111 to 135 miles per hour.  


Aberdeen resident dies after June 18th accident west of Gettysburg

A second person has died as a result of injuries sustained in a two-vehicle crash that happened June 18 west of Gettysburg.

 

A 2003 Chevrolet Monte Carlo was westbound on U.S. Highway 212 when the driver lost control as the vehicle entered a right-turning curve. The vehicle cross the centerline and collided with an eastbound 2013 Ford F350 pickup.

 

Joseph Skye, the 35-year-old passenger in the Monte Carlo, was pronounced dead at the scene. The female driver, 24-year-old Mariah LeBeau of Aberdeen, S.D., sustained life-threatening injuries. She was eventually airlifted to a Sioux Falls hospital where she died Saturday, June 27. Neither occupant was wearing a seat belt.

 

Calen Decker of Gettysburg was the 19-year-old male driver of the pickup. He was wearing a seat belt.

 

Charges are pending against both drivers.

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


Authorities identify a man presumed drowned in the Missouri River Friday

(KCCR - Pierre, SD) Authorities have identified a man missing in the Missouri River since Friday afternoon.  The Stanley County Sheriff’s Office says 37 year-old Lee Weber is presumed drowned. 

 

He dove into the river just before three pm Friday approximately two miles northwest of Fort Pierre.  Weber went into the river trying to save his eight year-old son who had fallen off a moving boat.  A nearby boat rescued the child, but Weber, who was not wearing a life jacket, was swept away by the river’s current. 

 

Approximately 18 local, state and federal agencies have been involved in the search for Weber using multiple assets including boats, divers, drones, cadaver dogs and aircraft from the South Dakota Highway Patrol.  Officials say the search will continue, but be scaled back in the number of agencies being involved. 

 

Weber has been a Deputy Sheriff with the Hughes County Sheriff’s Office since 2015.  Sheriff Darin Johnson says while it is a sad moment for his family and all who know him, it’s no surprise he jumped into the river after his son.   Lee served with the U-S military in Iraq and Afghanistan and Johnson says those around Weber will remember his unselfishness and bravery.


SDPB reports taxpayers covering $350,000 for Mt. Rushmore fireworks show

South Dakota Public Broadcasting reports South Dakota taxpayers will be footing the bill to the tune of $350,000 for the Mt. Rushmore fireworks display Friday.  According to South Dakota’s open checkbook website where spending can be checked, a check for half the amount has already been cut for $175,000 to Pyro Spectaculars Inc. out of California.  The Governor’s office and South Dakota Department of Tourism originally claimed the money would be covered through sponsorships.  The money is coming out of the state’s future fund, which has a current balance of $23 million and is meant to be used for research and economic development according to state law. 


New law takes effect which allows drug felons to receive benefits

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) A law now in effect will allow people with drug felonies on their records to be able to access the “Temporary Assistance to Needy Families” program.

 

Senator Reynold Nesiba of Sioux Falls was the prime sponsor of the bill......(NEWS16)(families)(:15)

 

Nesiba says a visit to the women’s prison in Pierre showed him the need for help when they get out.....(NEWS17)(the difference)(:29)

 

Nesiba says Governor Kristi Noem also supported the bill.......(NEWS18)(possibly be)(:31)

 

The legislature lifted the ban on drug felons getting food stamps in 2011.


Citywide mosquito spray scheduled for Thursday

The City of Aberdeen has canceled the scheduled city-wide ground spray for mosquitoes on Wednesday, July 1st and has scheduled a city-wide aerial application for mosquitoes for Thursday, July 2nd between the hours of 8:00 pm and 1:00 am.   

 

Mosquito Control surveillance program has noticed a high number of mosquitoes being collected in the traps as well as an increase in the Culex species.  The Culex species is the most common carrier of West Nile Virus.  You can reduce the risk of getting West Nile Virus by eliminating mosquito habitat around your property, applying insect repellents and wearing proper clothing when outdoors. 

 

For more information, contact Aberdeen Mosquito Control Program at 626.7015


Dept. of Safety to resume sobriety checkpoints in July

South Dakota’s Department of Public Safety will resume its monthly statewide sobriety checkpoints starting in July.

 

The checkpoints were halted in early March due to COVID-19. The checkpoints are done each month in different counties as a way to discourage drivers from drinking and then driving.

 

There are 19 checkpoints planned in 16 counties during July.

 

Checkpoints are scheduled in the counties of: Beadle, Brown, Brule, Butte, Codington, Custer, Fall River, Hughes, Lake, Lawrence, Lincoln, McCook, Minnehaha, Pennington, Roberts and Yankton.

 

The checkpoints are funded by the South Dakota Office of Highway Safety and conducted by the South Dakota Highway Patrol with the help of local law enforcement. Both the Office of Highway Safety and the Highway Patrol are part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


July 1st marks "Canada Day" celebration

Today is Canada Day for our neighbors to the North.  Canada Day, also known as Dominion day is observed every July 1st and celebrates the anniversary of this date in 1867 when the constitution act was passed uniting three separate colonies, The Province of Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick into a single dominion within the British Empire which came to be called Canada.  In popular culture the day is often associated with the 4th of July as a type of Independence Day for the great white north.  The day is often used by Canadians to show patriotism, enjoy a day off from work, light of fireworks and enjoy other summer activities.   


Mt. Rushmore fireworks plan draws criticism.

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem will welcome President Donald Trump July 3rd for a fireworks display at Mt. Rushmore to celebrate the 4th of July. 

 

The event has drawn criticism as it will bring 7,500 people together with no social distancing guidelines, no mask requirements and potential fire dangers. 

 

State epidemiologist Dr. Joshua Clayton says  the Health Department is trying to work with the administration on this event…

 

 

 

 

A former local lawmaker in Rapid City is speaking out on the President's visit. Former Republican state senator for District 32, Stan Adelstein tells KOTA he is worried this event could be used as a political rally for one candidate instead of a celebration of America...

 

 


Changes to state's "move over" law take effect Wednesday

New provisions in the state’s Move Over law take effect July 1.

 

Senate Bill 164 was passed by the 2020 state Legislature. The new provisions include:

 

               *** The minimum fine for a violation for the move over law increases from $122.50 to $270;

 

*** If a driver fails to move over and causes a crash with an emergency vehicle, the offense increases to a Class 1 misdemeanor; and,

 

*** Along with moving over for emergency vehicles that are displaying flashing amber lights, traffic is now required to move over for authorized vehicles that use a blue light while working on a highway.  All traffic must still stop for emergency vehicles flashing red lights.

 

“It can be a safety risk for law enforcement, firefighters, emergency responders and others working along the roadside because they don’t know if approaching vehicles will move over,” said DPS Cabinet Secretary Craig Price. “These new provisions helped strengthen the current law. We appreciate the support of Gov. Kristi Noem, state Sen. John Wiik and state Rep. Tim Rounds on this legislation.”


Name released in Yankton county fatal crash

A 35-year-old Vermillion, S.D. woman has been identified as the person who died in a two-vehicle crash that occurred Monday night, June 22, in Yankton.

 

The Yankton County Sheriff’s Office was pursuing a 2006 Chrysler Sebring that had been reported stolen. The Yankton Police Department also tried to stop the vehicle within the city limits. The vehicle was westbound on Fourth Street when it failed to negotiate a right-hand curve while attempting to turn north onto Summit Street. It collided with an eastbound 1998 Chevrolet Silverado pickup.

 

Both drivers were taken by ambulance to the Yankton hospital. Adrienne Whitefeather, who was driving the Sebring, later died as a result of her injuries. Tyler Andrea of Yankton, S.D., the 32-year-old male driver of the Silverado, sustained serious non-life threatening injuries. Neither was wearing a seat belt.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


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