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"We took them away from their parents on the assumption that we as a society would do a better job of raising them," Mark Courtney, a social work researcher at the University of Washington.
South Dakota CPS News Archive
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South Dakota News Coverage
Judge delays ruling in Indian child welfare lawsuit
Attorneys for several Native American tribes and families that are suing South Dakota say they need to see records of a circuit court judge's conversations to show how he ordered fellow judges to handle child custody hearings.
The attorneys for the Oglala Sioux and Rosebud Sioux tribes and several Native American parents contended during a hearing Thursday that 7th Circuit Judge Jeff Davis must reveal how he advised fellow judges to conduct 48-hour child custody hearings, the Rapid City Journal reported.
March 6, 2015
South Dakota Foster Care Scandal: Lakota Children Sexual Abuse Case Covered up by Attorney General
We have previously reported about what some in South Dakota are calling a "Shocking Genocide Against Native Americans by Abducting Their Children."
Listen to Attorney Daniel Sheehan of the Lakota People's Law Project explain how the Department of Social Services in South Dakota makes up 53% of the entire state budget every year by removing Lakota Native Americans from their families and placing them into the foster care system.
February 24, 2015
South Dakota Commits Shocking Genocide Against Native Americans by Abducting Their Children
Genocide is not too strong a term for what is now happening in South Dakota. The huge, shocking violation of legal and human rights being carried out by the state is tantamount to genocide against the Native American nations, the Lakota, Dakota...
The Department of Social Services makes up 53% of the entire budget for the state of South Dakota every year, right on the backs of the Native people. This is a gross violation of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978. Further, these abominable kidnappings are being upheld by the courts of that state. Over 700 American Indian children are removed by South Dakota state officials from their homes every year.
February 14, 2015
Sioux Falls couple says their children are victims of 'medical kidnapping'
A Sioux Falls couple is preparing for a Christmas without their three children---who are now in the state's custody.
Parents Molly and Mike say their children were taken from their home after taking their 2 month old son to the E-R for an unknown injury. They say similar stories can be found all over the U.S. They've now gone more than three weeks without their children with no idea when or how they might get them back.
December 29, 2014
South Dakota perpetuates child sex slavery
A sex scandal that can be characterized as the selling of Native American children into sexual slavery has been perpetrated by South Dakota.
The background is the genocidal abduction of Sioux children from their homes and placing them with white foster care families. All of these removals by the state are illegal under federal law. The state removes more than 700 native children each year, on the flimsiest pretexts. Indian children account for 13.8 percent of the state's child population but represent 56.3 percent of the foster care population. Of the hundreds of native children in foster care, 87 percent were placed in non-Indian homes while native foster homes are empty. Once the children are removed, state courts routinely keep them from even seeing their families for at least 60 days.
September 21, 2013
South Dakota covers up sex abuse of Native foster children
Forced into sexually abusive foster care. Incredible and atrocious as it may sound, that is the fate the state of South Dakota assigned to several Lakota children through its Department of Social Services.
Few crimes resonate more strongly in human consciousness for condemnation than the mistreatment of vulnerable, defenseless children, but the state of South Dakota has sunk to the bottom of the deepest abyss of human depravity in its treatment of Indian children. The following case and others constitute a singularly shameful chapter in the annals of American history. Something has to be done about South Dakota!
September 16, 2013
SD man turns business resort into training academy
A South Dakota wind power entrepreneur has transformed a resort for business retreats into a training academy for former foster children.
All students will spend their six-month program living in a dorm on the Buffalo Ridge campus and receiving on-the-job training, The Sioux Falls Argus Leader reported. They'll also be taught how to balance a checkbook and work with local governments.
August 12, 2013
SD's mountain lion season hits lull
The 2013 Black Hills Mountain Lion hunting season has come to an almost complete standstill as far as hunter success rates are concerned. Not a single mountain lion has been reported killed in the past eleven days.
The last lion was brought down on March 6th in Pennington County. Right now, the number of lions brought down in the 2013 hunting season stands at 49. That's less than half the season limit of 100 lions.
March 17, 2013
GF&P seeks to raise lion quota, start earlier, allow hounds in park
The state Game, Fish & Parks Commission on Friday proposed a longer mountain lion season for next winter that could kill up to 100 cats and would allow hunting with hounds in Custer State Park.
The commission's intent in the proposed season, which would open Dec. 26 and run through March, is for a sharper reduction in a Black Hills mountain lion population that is now thought to be about 100 lions greater than GF&P staffers previously estimated.
August 4, 2012
SD court upholds end of father's parental rights
The South Dakota Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a lower court's decision to end a man's parental rights to his daughter in a ruling that defines the extent of efforts the state must make to prevent the breakup of an American Indian family.
The state Department of Social Services made an active effort, as required under the federal Indian Child Welfare Act, to help the child's father receive training so the girl could be placed in his California home, the high court said in a unanimous ruling. "Those efforts were unsuccessful in any progress toward that goal," the Supreme Court said in a ruling that identified the girl and her parents only by their initials.
June 21, 2012
West River lawmaker says lions wrongly confiscated
Two West River men stand to regain mountain lions carcasses that were confiscated by the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Department if legislation by state Rep. Betty Olson becomes law.
Ranchers are lining up behind Olson and her bills. Sportsmen and GF&P officials are preparing to fight them. Olson, R-Prairie City, has introduced two bills, HB1081 and HB1082, that are aimed at two individual cases where someone killed a lion and wasn't able to keep the carcass.
January 28, 2012
Foster children face challenges after aging out of system
According to social services, children age out of the foster care system or are "emancipated" at 18, or when they graduate from high school, whichever is first.
Some of the teens maintain a relationship with their former foster families, but some don't. All of them, experts said, face a challenging future when federal and state funding ends.
January 22, 2012
Empty promises and a broken system
Armando Hernandez was just a child when he and his siblings searched their home for alcohol their mother stashed. And when they found it, they poured it down the drain and threw the bottles out.
It was the beginning of a childhood marred by his mother's alcoholism, a father in and out of the picture, years of bouncing from one foster family to another and the weighty responsibility of caring for his younger siblings - who experienced the same disappointments he did each day. Hernandez, now 20, is one of hundreds of young adults in South Dakota, and thousands across America, who have spent their teenage years in foster care.
January 22, 2012
EDITORIAL: No harm in foster care summit
A National Public Radio series on Native American foster care in South Dakota has prompted the Interior Department's Office of Indian Affairs to request a summit between federal, state and tribal officials.
The NPR series alleged that the state has violated the federal Indian Child Welfare Act by removing too many Native American children from their homes and placing them with non-Native families. According to the NPR report, 90 percent of Native American children that are removed from their homes each year in South Dakota are sent to foster care in non-Native homes or group homes. Federal law requires that Native children be placed with relatives or with Native American foster families, except in unusual circumstances.
December 30, 2011
Abuse, native foster care focus of Unity Rally
A small group of activists rallied Friday in Rapid City to protest sexual abuse of children and the state's foster care system.
The two-issue Unity Rally for the Children took place at 1 p.m. at Memorial Park. Addressing the issue of sexual abuse were Mayor Sam Kooiker and Robert Brancato, director of the Rapid City chapter of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. Tate Walker of the American Civil Liberties Union of South Dakota and Evelyn Red Lodge, a reporter for the Native Sun News, talked about problems they see with the state's foster care system.
December 17, 2011
Hunters worry about lions' impact in Hills
When the firing is finished for 2011 in the Black Hills, sport hunters will have killed about 3,000 deer. Mountain lions will have killed 4,000 or more.
In an ongoing study of elk calves in Custer State Park, almost 70 percent of the 30 calves fitted with radio collars this spring are already believed to have been killed by lions. What's that mean for the future of big-hunting in the Black Hills? Hunters like Lee DeLange aren't quite sure.
October 30, 2011
Man Convicted Of Child Abuse For Second Time
A South Dakota man who was ordered in 2004 to serve five years in prison for abusing a 2-month-old child has now been convicted of abusing a 6-year-old.
Morgan was accused of squeezing the 6-year-old child's face hard enough to leave bruises. Authorities say the 2004 victim had bruises, bleeding on the brain and broken ribs.
October 6, 2011
Missing Hastings Boy Found Safe; Mother in Custody
A Hastings boy missing since early June has been found safe in South Dakota. His mother, who was found with him, was taken into custody.
Timber Dimm, 5, and his mother, Wendi Bartell Dimm were found at a women's shelter in rural South Dakota. Officers from the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigations and the Perkins County Sheriff's Office arrested Wendi Bartell Dimm and turned Timber Dimm over to Child Protective Services.
August 3, 2011
Giving Pregnant Women's Relatives Legal Defense to Kill to Protect Unborn Baby Could Mean 'License to Kill' Abortionists, South Dakota Lawmaker Says
A South Dakota lawmaker says efforts to expand the state's definition of justifiable homicide could translate into a "license to kill" abortion providers.
Lawmakers are considering a bill that originally sought to allow a pregnant woman to use force to protect her unborn child without being prosecuted for homicide or assault. A committee later extended that protection to the woman's relatives. Democratic Rep. Peggy Gibson says the new language could allow people to claim self-defense for killing doctors or others who try to provide a woman with an abortion.
February 16, 2011
Pay phone unplugged after costing Davison County $69 per call
MITCHELL, S.D. - A pay phone in the county courthouse in Mitchell will be unplugged after officials discovered it
It cost the county $763 a year to have the phone. Ruml said records showed only 11 calls were placed on the phone in 2010.
January 15, 2011
Sioux Falls teacher arrested for rape
26 year-old special education teacher Nicholas Jastorff was arrested this afternoon in Lawrence County on multiple charges of raping a 13 year-old female student.
The investigation into the charges has been going on for almost a month but KSFY Action News reporter Jake Iversen explains why it took so long to make the arrest. On November thirteenth a school resource officer at Patrick Henry Middle School learned of an improper relationship going on between a student and special education teacher Nicholas Jastorff.
December 2, 2010
Why doesn't GFP relocate cougars that wander into city?
John Kanta listened to people cry, swear and complain in the days following the killing of a mountain lion that was found in a Storybook Island neighborhood.
He also listened to the question: Why can't you just relocate it? Some people angered by the state Game, Fish & Parks Department's decision to kill the 2-year-old, 120-pound male lion Nov. 19 think it could have and should have been relocated, rather than killed.
Rapid City Journal
November 29, 2009
School dress code proves a hardship for SD tribe
EAGLE BUTTE -- Carol Moran spent all she could spare on new school clothes for her 15-year-old daughter. Then she found out a new dress code had been imposed at the junior high school that serves the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe.
Moran, who walks with a cane and survives on welfare in one of South Dakota's most impoverished regions, said buying a whole new set of clothes is out of the question. Her daughter, Kyann, already has been sent home twice for violating the dress code since school started two weeks ago.
September 13, 2009
South Dakota Hunters Petition for Increased Cougar Kill in Black Hills
South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks commissioners expect an emotionally-charged commission meeting next week in Custer.
Next week, GF&P commissioners will hear from a group of hunters critical of the state's management of the mountain lion population which, they say, is responsible for the declining elk and deer in the Black Hills.
May 12, 2009
Techs may be required to report abuse
NEW BRITAIN -- Computer technicians would be obligated to report child abuse just like doctors, teachers and others who work closely with children, under measures being considered by lawmakers in two states.
At least five states - Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina and South Dakota - require computer technicians to report child pornography. Connecticut and California are considering legislation that would go a step further, adding technicians to the list of "mandated reporters" who notify authorities about any type of child abuse and neglect.
Redding Record Searchlight (CT)
May 19, 2007
Alert Kidjacked to South Dakota CPS news!
Jacked Up: SD: Police Shirk Duties
I am writing about my 3-year-old son, Lucas. I live in central Minnesota and his mother lives in Lake Andes, South Dakota. We have split 50/50 parenting time.
May 15, 2010