SD Attorney General says SD GEAR UP scandal is important case for our state

Published: Nov. 10, 2017 at 2:04 PM MST
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South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley says the South Dakota Gear Up scandal is an important case for our state.

It culminated with a murder-suicide in Platte in September of 2015, when law enforcement says Scott Westerhuis shot and killed his wife and kids before setting his house on fire then shooting himself.

Officials say it happened after Scott and his wife Nicole stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Mid-Central Educational Cooperative where they worked.

Mid-Central is the organization that ran the GEAR UP program for Native American high school students.

But, Jackley says they didn't act alone when it comes to stealing money from the company, he says trial dates have been set for three people who allegedly aided in the embezzlement scheme.

He says former Mid-Central Business Manager Stephanie Hubers is set to go to trial in March and he is personally trying the case.

The other two, former Gear Up administrator Stacy Phelps and former Mid-Central Director Dan Guericke are set to go to trial at the end of June.

South Dakota Attorney General, Marty Jackley, says, "I've kept an open opportunity that if more information comes forth and in fact I just had a witness come forth to me just the other day and provide additional information that we could bring additional charges including these individuals or other individuals."

Jackley says the case is important for South Dakota because there was wrongdoing and says taxpayer dollars were taken.