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Attorney General Marty Jackley

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Attorney General Jackley Announces Peacemaker Found Not Guilty in Watertown Murder Trial

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Contact: Tony Mangan, Communications Director, 605-773-6878

PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley has announced that Jeremiah Peacemaker of Watertown has been found not guilty of First Degree Murder in the August, 2020 death of Kendra Owen of Watertown.

A Codington County jury returned the verdict late Tuesday night after testimony from dozens of witnesses, law enforcement officers, and forensic experts.

“We respect the decision of the jury,” said Attorney General Jackley. “Thank you to the law enforcement officers who investigated this case, and the jury for their work.  We recognized the challenges of no murder weapon, no eyewitnesses, or confession but felt other evidence, including a fingerprint and blood, needed to go to the jury and was deserving of their 10 hours of deliberations.”

The South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation and the Watertown Police Department investigated the case. Attorney General Jackley and Chief Deputy Attorney General Brent Kempema prosecuted the case.