South Dakota Attorney General Who Killed Man in Crash Gets Speeding Ticket

Jason Ravnsborg/Wikimedia Commons
Jason Ravnsborg/Wikimedia Commons

Just four days before he was set to stand trial for a fatal road accident, South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg got a speeding ticket—for going 57 mph in a 35 mph zone.

It was Ravnsborg’s seventh speeding infraction in seven years, according to local media—but hardly his most serious traffic violation.

That came in September 2020 when Ravnsborg rammed his car into Joseph Boever on a highway shoulder while driving home from a Republican Party function.

Ravnsborg, the top law-enforcement officer in the state, called police and said he thought he had hit an animal. Boever’s body was not found until the next day when Ravnsborg returned to the highway.

During an interrogation, investigators told Ravnsborg that he hit Boever so hard and directly that the dead man’s glasses ended up inside his car.

“That means his face came through your windshield,” a North Dakota Bureau of Investigation agent told Ravnsborg. “His face is in your windshield. Think about it.”

<div class="inline-image__caption"><p>Nick Nemec, cousin of Joe Boever, at the crash scene.</p></div> <div class="inline-image__credit">Tom Lawrence</div>

Nick Nemec, cousin of Joe Boever, at the crash scene.

Tom Lawrence

The AG, who said he was scanning something on his phone right before the crash, was charged with three misdemeanors: use of an electronic device while driving, illegal lane change, and careless driving.

Last week, just before trial, Ravnsborg cut a deal with prosecutors to avoid trial: The careless driving count was dropped and he pleaded no contest to the other charges, incurring a $500 fine for each.

But now he faces a new misdemeanor charge for “speeding on other roadways” for the incident in Hughes County the night of Aug. 22. A fine of $177.50 is due Sept. 20, according to Dakota News Now.

Ravnsborg has not commented on the latest incident but was already facing calls to resign from both Democrats and Republicans and possible impeachment proceedings. He has said he will not step down.

This story has been updated to reflect that Ravnsborg called police after hitting Boever and did not leave the scene without permission.

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