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Attorney General Jason R. Ravnsborg

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ATTORNEY GENERAL’S OFFICE RELEASES LAKE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE SHOOTING SUMMARY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, October 30, 2020

PIERRE, S.D.Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg and the Division of Criminal Investigation today released the summary into the shooting of Benjamin Hernandez, 34, Madison, on September 30, 2020, in Madison, South Dakota.  The Division of Criminal Investigation, assisted by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, the Madison Police Department, the Brookings Police Department, and the South Dakota Highway Patrol conducted the investigation at the request of the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. 

The incident occurred around 2:25 pm on September 30, 2020.  Madison Police and Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a report of a suicidal male, armed with a shotgun, in a vehicle at a convenience store in Madison.  The male, later identified as Hernandez, made numerous threats to kill himself and shoot officers.  Negotiations with Hernandez were unsuccessful.  A Madison Police Officer fired two less-than-lethal rounds, attempting to disarm Hernandez and get him out of the vehicle.  The attempt was unsuccessful and led to Hernandez pointing the loaded shotgun towards officers with his finger on the trigger.  This action resulted in a Lake County Sheriff’s Deputy firing a single round which struck Hernandez in the chest and ultimately disarmed him.

It is the conclusion of the Attorney General that the actions of the Lake County Sheriff’s Deputy were justified.  The Office of the South Dakota Attorney General and the Division of Criminal Investigation thank the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and the Deputy for their complete cooperation in this investigation.

The DCI summary can be read here.

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The Office of the Attorney General is the chief legal officer for the State of South Dakota and provides legal advice to agencies, boards, and commissions of the State as well as representing the State in state and federal court.  The Office of Attorney General also handles prosecutions, felony criminal appeals, civil matters, consumer protection issues, and issues formal opinions interpreting statutes for agencies of the state.  Visit www.atg.sd.gov to learn more.

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CONTACT: Tim Bormann, Chief of Staff, (605) 773-3215