Clay County State's Attorney


Welcome to the Clay County State’s Attorney’s Office.


Frequently Asked Questions

If you have been a victim of a crime and you wish to report it to be investigated, please contact your local law enforcement agency (police department or sheriff’s office). A law enforcement officer will take a statement from you, follow up with an investigation that may include additional inquires for you and or other witnesses. Once the investigation is complete, the matter will be forwarded to the State’s Attorney’s office for consideration. Our office will consider the information provided in determining whether a crime has been committed, and whether a criminal burden of proof can be met with the facts and circumstances provided. Even in cases where criminal offenses cannot be pursued, you may have civil remedies available and should visit with your own attorney to discuss those options.

The State’s Attorney’s Office will always consider a victim’s wishes when deciding how to proceed with a criminal matter. However, it is the prosecutor’s decision whether to proceed with a criminal offense or to dismiss a case. Public safety is a primary consideration for prosecutors when deciding how best to dispose of a criminal matter. At times the interests of public and individual safety will override a victim’s desires for dismissal of a criminal matter.

When you have immediate safety concerns for a friend or loved one regarding actions and/or statements the person has made about self-harm, you should promptly contact your local law enforcement agency to discuss whether an involuntary mental health committal process should be pursued. Law enforcement can assist in determining whether the loved one should be evaluated by a qualified mental health professional, and in turn whether the county’s mental health board should be contacted for a mental health hold and temporary placement in a mental health facility.

When a friend or loved one has severe substance abuse problems (with either drugs or alcohol), to an extent that the person no longer seems to possess the ability to make appropriate decisions for their well-being because of the addiction, you may speak to the attorney for the county who assists with filing Involuntary Alcohol/Substance Abuse Committal proceedings. This is not an immediate fix to the problem but can provide an avenue to begin to force the issue of treatment with your loved one. To visit about these options, contact the State’s Attorney’s office and you will be directed to the attorney who is responsible for initiating those proceedings.

To apply for a domestic, stalking, or vulnerable adult protection order, you should visit the local Clerk of Court’s office to file an application regarding the same. Applications may also be accessed at the South Dakota Unified Judicial System website at:

The state’s attorney’s office is not a party to a civil protection order proceeding and is not able to represent an individual in those matters. However, once a protection order is issued by a Court, any violations of the terms of the protection order (regarding no contact, continued harassing behavior, etc.) are criminal matters that should be immediately reported to law enforcement for prosecution by the state’s attorney’s office.

A civil protection order is a different from a ‘no contact’ bond condition. Once a civil protection order has been granted, you must return to the Court that granted the order and request the Court issue its order dismissing the protection order. Until you receive an order from the Court dismissing the protection order, or until it expires pursuant to its original terms, it remains in full force and effect.

Separately, a ‘no contact’ order may be issued as a condition of release by a defendant in a criminal proceeding prosecuted by the State’s Attorney’s office. This is common in cases for a defendant who has been arrested for having committed a crime against another person (domestic violence, stalking, child abuse, etc.). If you are a victim of the offense charged, you may appear at court proceedings for the defendant and express your wishes regarding bond conditions for the defendant. At times the State’s Attorney’s office will support your wishes, and at times, the State’s Attorney’s office will make recommendations regarding bond that differ from your requests in the interests of public safety.

No, under South Dakota law it is a separate criminal offense for a person charged with a domestic violence offense to have contact with the victim while in custody. Do not attempt to contact your significant other while in custody; it can result in further criminal charges for them.

The South Dakota Attorney General’s Office tracks and monitor’s fraudulent activities that have been perpetrated on citizens of our state. Report concerns of fraud to their consumer protection division. Additional information can be found at:

All the attorneys in our office are employed full-time in the Clay County State’s Attorney’s Office, and pursuant to SDCL 7-16-19 & SDCL 7-16-3, we are prohibited from representing individuals in their civil court proceedings.