The pedestrian who was struck by South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg’s car last month died from the impact of the crash, according to a preliminary autopsy released Tuesday.
State authorities on Tuesday released the autopsy along with the recording of a 911 call Ravnsborg placed the night of Sept. 12 after he killed Joseph Boever, 55, who was walking along the side of the road to his broken-down vehicle.
“I hit something,” Ravnsborg says on the call, which lasted almost two and a half minutes. “It was in the middle of the road.”
When the 911 dispatcher asked if he could have hit a deer, Ravnsborg says, “I have no idea” and adds “it could be.”
Ravnsborg in a statement released after the crash claimed he didn’t realize he hit Boever on the side of Highway 14, and had assumed it was a deer until he returned back to the scene the next morning–and discovered Boever’s body.
The attorney general claimed at the time he did not have any alcoholic beverages before getting behind the wheel.
A toxicology report taken roughly 15 hours after the crash showed no alcohol in Ravnsborg’s system — though even someone with a blood-alcohol content well over .008 would not have alcohol show up in their system that long after the incident.
Boever’s family has been skeptical of the attorney general’s claims since the crash occurred.
“A human doesn’t look like a deer,” Boever’s cousin, Victor Nemee said last month. “The whole thing stinks to me.”
The crash remains under investigation with Gov. Kristi Noem promising a transparent process. But Nemee told the Associated Press Tuesday he was frustrated that it took more than a month for a full autopsy report.
“I understand you want to do a thorough job, but it sure does seem like it’s gone on to the back burner,” he said.
With AP wires