Detectives say South Dakota Attorney Gen. Jason Ravnsborg (R) knew he hit a pedestrian in his fatal 2020 car crash. South Dakota lawmakers, a committee made up of seven Republicans and two Democrats, are interviewing law enforcement officers to try to understand what happened that night.

The committee is deliberating whether the crash should result in impeachment charges.

The man killed was 55-year-old Joseph Boever. Ravnsborg testified that he thought he had hit an animal until returning the next morning and finding the body.

Detectives don’t know how he didn’t realize it was a human.

“You walk by a flashlight (that has been suspected to be carried by Boever) that’s on and there’s a body that’s laying within two feet of the roadway … I believe he would have had to see him,” said Arnie Rummel, a North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation agent who handled the probe. “[Ravnsborg] did not report what he’d actually seen. Some of the things we asked him directly about were not factual.”

North Dakota agents were called in to conduct part of the investigation because Ravnsborg oversaw the South Dakota branch that would’ve been tasked with his case.

The investigation confirmed that Ravnsborg was distracted when he hit Boever and his car had been completely on the shoulder of the highway during impact, but then the details get blurry. An animal’s blood was found near the scene of the crime and the late Hyde County Sheriff, Mike Volek, who was the first person on the scene, did not investigate a light he’d seen coming from a ditch near the crash.

The aggressive line of questioning from the lawmakers drew criticism from South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R).

“It grieves me that because of a political agenda, some legislators on the committee are attacking the integrity of our law enforcement officers,” she said.

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