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Noem hires former Oglala Sioux police chief for state post as another tribe votes to ban her • South Dakota Searchlight

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Noem hires former Oglala Sioux police chief for state post as another tribe votes to ban her • South Dakota Searchlight


Gov. Kristi Noem appointed a former Oglala Sioux Tribe Department of Public Safety chief to a post in the state’s Department of Tribal Relations on Tuesday, alleging he “found himself without a job” for speaking up about drug cartels on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

The appointment of Algin Young as tribal law enforcement liaison came as another tribe voted to ban the governor from its lands, and as questions arose about the impact of a ban voted on by another South Dakota tribe.

Sixth tribal nation bans Noem for comments on cartels, Native children

The Crow Creek Sioux Tribe voted to ban Noem from its lands Tuesday morning, Chairman Peter Lengkeek told South Dakota Public Broadcasting. The Yankton Sioux Tribe’s Business and Claims Committee, the highest-level elected body for that nation, voted to support a ban last week, though it’s since been pointed out that such a ban would not be final and enforceable without a vote of tribal members. The tribes were the sixth and seventh of the nine tribes in the state to vote in favor of banning the governor so far this year.

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The recent spate of conflicts with the state’s tribes began on Jan. 31, when the governor delivered a speech on U.S. border policy to a joint session of the South Dakota Legislature. In it, she described the southern border of the U.S. as a “warzone,” language she repeated in her Tuesday press release on Young’s appointment. 

Her speech included language calling out the impact of Mexican drug cartels on the reservations. 

Noem has suggested that responses from tribal leaders to her cartel comments, as well as the bans, have come because some of them are “personally benefiting” from a cartel presence on reservations.

She’s also drawn fire for telling audiences in Winner and Mitchell that Native children lack hope, and that “they don’t have parents who show up and help them.”

Young appointment implies firing 

Noem has argued that the federal government is failing tribes through a lack of law enforcement funding. The Oglala Sioux Tribe has sued the federal government over that issue, and Noem pledged to support that lawsuit during her Jan. 31 speech.

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The governor’s office has not intervened as a party in the tribe’s most recent federal lawsuit, but she has moved to support tribal law enforcement in other ways. Last month, she pledged to fund a special session of the state’s police academy specifically for tribal trainees. Most tribal police train for 13 weeks in New Mexico, and South Dakota’s congressional delegation has lobbied for a regional training facility to encourage recruitment. 

In February, Noem penned a letter to the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs urging more funding for tribal law enforcement in South Dakota.

In Noem’s press release on his appointment, Young said that he looks forward “to serving as an ambassador for the State of South Dakota at the federal level and with the State’s nine tribal nations to facilitate solutions for tribal law enforcement and understand and navigate jurisdictional challenges.”

The release also includes a thinly veiled reference to tribal resistance to Noem’s comments. 

The release says that Young “found himself without a job” after “bravely testifying before the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs on the cartel presence on tribal lands.”

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Noem slings accusations about tribes while signing education bills

Young testified before that committee during a listening session about public safety in Indian Country on March 20. His testimony came minutes after the testimony of Oglala Sioux Tribal President Frank Star Comes Out. 

Neither mentioned cartels in their verbal comments, which can be viewed in full on the committee’s website

The Senate committee did collect written testimony until April 12, and that testimony is not available online. There was no immediate response Tuesday to an email to the committee’s press officers asking for any written testimony that may have been submitted by Young or Star Comes Out.

The tribe’s director of public safety job was advertised on the tribe’s Facebook page on April 15. There were no Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearings between March 20 and that date. 

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Indian Country Today reported that Young’s contract expired on April 20.

Star Comes Out did not return a Searchlight message seeking comment on Young’s appointment.

Representatives with Noem’s office and the Office of Tribal Relations did not offer a date for the “cartel presence” testimony.

Yankton Sioux Tribe ban vote not binding

So far, seven tribes have voted to ban Noem from their lands. The Lower Brule Sioux Tribe and Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe have yet to pass such a resolution. Lower Brule voted down such a ban earlier this year, but Chairman Clyde Estes told SDPB that it might consider one again in June based on Noem’s comments about Native children.

Noem to lawmakers: Be ready to take action on southern border ‘invasion’

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“The children should be left out of any political discussion,” Estes told SDPB’s Lee Strubinger. “To say that they have no hope is wrong and she should not have said that.”

The Yankton Sioux Tribe’s Business and Claims Committee voted to support a ban that would bar the governor from its lands on Friday, but that vote lacks the authority of law, the committee’s secretary said Tuesday. 

Such a ban would not be official without a vote from the tribe’s general council, meaning a vote of tribal members at a meeting called by either the committee leadership or a petition from tribal members.

“We don’t have anything scheduled,” said Secretary Courtney Sully. “We don’t even have a resolution.”

The Yankton Sioux Tribe is the only one of the nine tribes in South Dakota that lacks a tribal council-style government with elected representatives to vote on all tribal affairs. Such governments are known as “IRA” governments, named for the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934, which encouraged tribal nations to adopt city council-style authority structures.

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The Yankton Sioux Tribe’s Business and Claims Committee, Sully said, aligns more closely with pre-colonial decision-making. The committee is empowered to manage the tribe’s day-to-day affairs, Sully said, but cannot take larger actions without a vote of the people. 

“Banning someone isn’t part of our daily business,” said Sully, who said she abstained from the Friday vote. She doesn’t like the governor’s comments, she said, but doesn’t believe they rise to the level of something requiring a ban. 

The majority of the committee did vote to endorse a ban, however. A statement from Vice Chair Jason Cooke, sent to Searchlight on Tuesday, reiterated the earlier words of committee member Ryan Cournoyer, who said the vote was a sign of solidarity with other tribes.

The statement calls the governor “anti-tribe.” It references pre-2024 conflicts over pipeline protests, COVID checkpoints, education, and Noem’s lack of response to discrimination against Native Americans by a Rapid City hotel owner. The statement says the governor “now blames tribes for crime in her own cities.”

“Governor Noem, stop the political pandering and get serious about working on these issues with Tribes,” Cooke wrote. “It has been six years of inaction, ineptness, and ignorance from your office on serious policy issues impacting our shared citizens.”

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South Dakota

Cedar County, Neb. authorities searching for missing Yankton, S.D. man around Missouri National Recreational River

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Cedar County, Neb. authorities searching for missing Yankton, S.D. man around Missouri National Recreational River


CEDAR COUNTY, Neb. (KTIV) – Authorities in Cedar County, Nebraska are asking for the public’s help in locating a Yankton, South Dakota man believed to be missing around the Missouri National Recreational River.

The Cedar County Sheriff’s Office in Nebraska and the National Parks Service are looking for 23-year-old Phillip Anthony Snoozy of Yankton, South Dakota. He was reported missing on Friday, May 24th.

Phillip Snoozy is 6′0” tall, 190 lbs. with blue eyes and brown hair. According to park officials, campers reported Snoozy missing after his personal belongings were found on the riverbank. Snoozy was last seen swimming alone in the Missouri River between 4:40 p.m. and 4:45 p.m., under the Meridian Bridge, along the Nebraska shoreline.

Snoozy’s disappearance is currently under investigation by Cedar County Sheriff’s Department and the National Park Service.

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If anyone has any information on the whereabouts of Snoozy, contact the Cedar County Sheriff’s Office at (402) 254-6884 or the National Parks Service Dispatch at (605) 574-3120.



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Minnesota, South Dakota Family Sickened with Worms From Bear Meat

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Minnesota, South Dakota Family Sickened with Worms From Bear Meat


Family members of families from Minnesota and South Dakota got brain worms from eating bear meat.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report reveals that nine family members from Minnesota, South Dakota, and Arizona contracted a parasitic infection after consuming undercooked bear meat kebabs during a family gathering in South Dakota.

Minnesota, South Dakota Family Infected with Worms From Bear Meat-Canva

Minnesota, South Dakota Family Infected with Worms From Bear Meat-Canva

The bear meat was harvested in northern Saskatchewan by one of the family members and stored in a freezer for over a month before being prepared.

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Although instructed by a hunting outfitter to freeze the meat to kill parasites, the larvae and worms present were freeze-resistant.

During the gathering, the bear meat was grilled alongside vegetables but accidentally served undercooked.

Minnesota, South Dakota Family Infected with Worms From Bear Meat-Canva

Minnesota, South Dakota Family Infected with Worms From Bear Meat-Canva

After initial consumption, the meat was recooked and served again. Even family members who claimed to have only eaten vegetables were affected, suggesting cross-contamination.

Doctors diagnosed them with Trichinellosis, a roundworm infection caused by consuming raw or undercooked meat contaminated with the parasite Trichinella.

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Trichinellosis Minnesota, South Dakota Family Infected with Worms From Bear Meat-Canva

Trichinellosis Minnesota, South Dakota Family Infected with Worms From Bear Meat-Canva

Family members ranging in age from 12 to 62 years old were ultimately diagnosed with the worms.

Three required hospitalization and treatment with the anti-parasitic medication albendazole. Six individuals experienced symptoms, but all recovered, according to health officials.

Tests conducted on the leftover bear meat confirmed the presence of Trichinella larvae.

According to the Mayo Clinic once inside the human body, the larvae can migrate to muscle tissue and organs like the brain, heart, lungs, and spinal cord.

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Gallery Credit: Canva.com

 





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Report: South Dakota has highest number of veteran-owned wholesale businesses in US

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Report: South Dakota has highest number of veteran-owned wholesale businesses in US


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) – A recent study broke down the concentration of veteran-owned businesses in each US state, revealing South Dakota is a leader in supporting local veterans.

Ahead of Memorial Day on Monday, veteran experts from AmFi analyzed the total number of businesses in each state alongside those owned by veterans to learn how veteran business owners are represented in each state.

South Dakota ranks 10th in the United States with 6.5% of businesses in the state estimated to be veteran-owned. In total, there are 1,442 estimated veteran-owned businesses in South Dakota.

West Virginia ranks 1st with 10.84% of businesses being veteran-owned.

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The study also revealed the leading industries in each state with the highest number of veteran-owned businesses.

South Dakota has the highest number of veteran-owned wholesale businesses in US(American Fidelity Life Insurance)

South Dakota’s largest industry for veteran-owned businesses is wholesale trade, with 13.6% of wholesale trade business owners being veterans in South Dakota, the highest rate nationwide.

Minnesota and North Dakota’s largest veteran-owned industries are construction with 6.43% and 7.32% respectively. Iowa’s largest veteran-owned industry is finance and insurance with 6.74%.

The full study can be found here.

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