Mike C. Fink
Committed to public safety, community service, and equal justice under the law.
The McCook County State's Attorney serves the citizens of our county and of South Dakota as the chief prosecutor of adult and juvenile crimes occurring in McCook County. The office is committed to helping to preserve the quality of life and low crime rates enjoyed by those who reside in South Dakota.
While the principal responsibility of the office is the prosecution of adult and juvenile crime, the office has the duty of protecting children who may be living in abusive or neglectful homes. Additionally, the office is responsible for providing legal advice and representation to the Board of Commissioners for the county and other elected and appointed department heads and staff.
AREAS OF ASSISTANCE
The States Attorney has the following responsibilities:
As a victim of crime, you may be experiencing feelings of confusion, frustration, fear and anger. We will explain your rights as a victim and help you better understand how the criminal justice system works.
One of the responsibilities of citizenship for those who have knowledge about the commission of a crime is to serve as witnesses at the criminal trial or one of the other hearings held in connection with the criminal prosecution. The complete cooperation and truthful testimony of all witnesses is essential to the proper determination of guilt or innocence in a criminal case.
Our office is concerned that victims and witnesses of crime are treated fairly throughout their contact with the criminal justice system. We have taken several steps to make the participation by victims of crime and witnesses more effective and meaningful.
One of these steps is the establishment of this website. We hope that it will provide you the answers to many of your questions and will give you sufficient general information to understand your rights and responsibilities.
A Protection Order is a legal document signed by a judge prohibiting a person from contacting the petitioner. A Protection Order violation is a Class I misdemeanor. Protection Orders are civil matters, but a criminal charge results when a Protection Order is violated. A Protection Order may be obtained at the McCook County Clerk of Courts, 130 W Essex Ave, Salem SD. Questions about obtaining a protection order can be addressed to staff in the clerk's office at (605) 425-2781.
If a criminal charge has been filed by the State's Attorney's Office, the victim may request that the attorney in court ask the judge to order a No Contact Order as a condition of bond. A No Contact Order is an order signed by a judge prohibiting the defendant in a criminal case from having any contact with the victim while out on bond. If the defendant violates either a Protection Order or a No Contact Order, the victim should contact the police immediately. Although the violator may be gone by the time the police arrive, victims should still have the police complete a report to forward to the State's Attorney's Office.
Your Role as a Witness
You may have been a victim of or an eye-witness to a crime. You may be the owner of stolen property, or be able to provide some piece of information which will help to prove a criminal case. You are an essential witness and without your cooperation, our criminal justice system could not work.
You can expect to receive a subpoena at some point in the proceedings which will require you to testify. Written statements are not permitted instead of live testimony because a person charged with a crime has a right to ask questions of the witnesses who testify against him/her through his/her attorney.
It is very important that you keep us informed of any changes in your address or phone number. We will not be able to notify you of dates in your case if we cannot locate you.
We hope that this website has answered many of your questions as to how the criminal justice system operates and what is expected of you in your role as a potential witness. Please feel free to contact us at (605) 425-2911 to discuss any of this information or to answer any questions relating to your case.
Protection Order Forms
There are two kinds of protection orders: Domestic and Stalking. Domestic protection orders are between "family and household members"; stalking protection orders are for other persons.
Under SDCL 25-10-3 there exists an action know as a petition for a protection order. When the person requesting the protection order alleges an immediate danger, the court may grant a temporary protection order pending a full hearing. SDCL 25-10-6. A temporary protection order is in effect for 30 days. SDCL 25-10-4. The respondent must be personally served SDCL 25-10-7. A hearing date will be set within those 30 days to allow the respondent and the petitioner to be heard and determine if a permanent protection order remains effective until the permanent order is served. SDCL 25-10-7.1.
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