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ArgusLeader_2017 - Evaluation ordered for death row inmate...
Evaluation ordered for death row inmate Acircuit judge on Friday said he wants the attorney for a killer and death row inmate to submit a report detailing his client’s mental disability. Judge Doug Hoffman wants to review the report before ruling on a motion filed by prosecutors to dismiss Rodney Berget’s death penalty appeal. Berget in August sent a letter to his judge requesting to withdraw his appeal despite the wishes of his attorney. His attorney, Eric Schulte, has argued at previous hearings that the judge should not rule on the motion until he’s had the time to determine if his client is mentally diminished. Prosecutors have contended that no evidence exist that shows Berget wasn’t competent at the time of his offense or even now. “It remains the State’s position that due process has been satisfied,” said Attorney General Marty Jackley in a statement. “Testing from throughout Berget’s lied up 115 fatalities. The final numbers aren’t expected to be in for another several weeks, but authorities don’t expect the number to increase significantly. “South Dakota is a national leader in the reduction of traffic fatalities,” said Lee Axdahl, director of the office of Highway Safety. “Which is particularly encouraging in a year when so many of our other states have been seeing significant increases. Obviously, this is the direction that we want to go every year but we cannot do it without the help of our friends and family members who drive.” Fatalities related to speed and alcohol were up slightly, the Highway Patrol said, while almost 70per- cent of people who died were not wearing seat belts. —Mark Walker, Argus Leader Miss South Sudan to appear at fundraiser in S.F. this weekend An international beauty pageant contender is in Sioux Falls on Saturday to raise money for her war- torn homeland. Akuany Ayuen Jong- kuch competed last month in the Miss World pageant in Washington D.C., representing South Sudan. Ayuen Jongkuch, 23, will be at the Church of Holy Apostles, 1415 S. Bahnson Ave., to raise money for an organization that helps children affected by violence in South Sudan. The event starts at 5 p.m., and will include traditional South Sudanese food and a presentation by Ayuen Jongkuch. She works for Power to Save Humanity, which provides education, food, shelter and counseling to the African nation’s residents. She said she will use the visit as a chance to discuss the organization. Ayuen Jongkuch also plans to talk her pageant platform, which was education. “I believe education is what will save us from everything that’s going on in my country,” Ayuen Jong- kuch said. “Without education you cannot really know how to relate to others.” —Patrick Anderson, Argus Leader BRIEFLY

Clipped from
  1. Argus-Leader,
  2. 07 Jan 2017, Sat,
  3. Page A2

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