SD Supreme Court sentences of Bison man for kidnapping and rape, upholds jury decision

Published: Dec. 31, 2020 at 2:26 PM MST
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BISON, S.D. (KEVN) - The South Dakota Supreme Court found there’s enough evidence to convict a longtime Bison business owner for kidnapping, raping and assaulting a family member while using a gun in a 25-page decision on Thursday.

The case involved Richard Seidel’s actions back in 2017 when he arrived at Bison Grain, his estranged wife’s workplace in Bison. He told an employee to go to lunch.

His then-wife testified Seidel slid zip ties around her neck, wrist and ankles. After showing a gun, he threw her in-of his pickup truck, took their marital home outside of Bison, and raped her several times.

He claimed the marks made by the ties were part of what is known as “erotic asphyxiation.”

He later made her drive him to the airport where he left in his private plane, she said.

The only witness to any part of it was the other employee who had left.

The jury believed her and found Seidel guilty of kidnapping, rape, aggravated assault and commission of a felony with a firearm. The gun wasn’t found, but bullets were.

Justice Patricia DeVaney wrote the Supreme Court’s unanimous decision that rejected all of Seidel’s appeals.

“Richard’s attempt to minimize the gravity of his offenses ignores that the jury found him guilty of multiple acts: kidnapping J.S. to inflict bodily injury or to terrorize her; assaulting her by cutting off her oxygen supply; and raping her—all while armed with a gun. These crimes indisputably sit on the more serious end of the spectrum of all criminality and ‘often warrant severe penalties.’”

The decision also found Circuit Judge Eric Strawn had given appropriate consideration in setting prison sentences Seidel is now serving for the crimes.

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