SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota will have a new Attorney General in the first week of 2023. And it looks like it will be a familiar face. Former Attorney General Marty Jackley isn’t doing much campaigning to win back his old seat.
Look at the upcoming November ballot, and you will see Jackley is the only candidate in the race for Attorney General. In a little more than six weeks, he will officially become the Attorney General-elect.
“Technically, I have to receive one vote,” Jackley said.
Jackley will become the state’s top law enforcement officer on January 7.
Tom Hanson: You spent ten years in that office how are you going to feel going back?
“It feels good I’ve already begun the process. Had an opportunity earlier this week to meet with the interim Attorney General, start talking budget,” Jackley said. “There were a lot of friendly, familiar faces, but there are also some new faces. You know there has been a challenging time, where there is about a third of the DCI agency that had left, there’s about 17 positions open, so it’s a great opportunity to begin filling those to mold what the DCI looks like and so I’m looking forward to it.”
Tom: What will be changing, anything changing from your last tenure?
“Certainly, there’s always change I mean, law enforcement becomes more sophisticated as I look at things that are going on in the forensic lab there are more opportunities to use science and forensics to solve crimes,” Jackley said.
Jackley talked about an uptick in violent gun-related crimes in the state’s two largest cities, including officer-involved shootings. He says finding ways to help stop this trend will be a top priority.
Tom: Do you feel like you can hit the ground running more than someone who is just coming into this?
“I do. That opportunity comes because I’ve had four years to re-energize. The background of having been a U.S. Attorney and an Attorney General is good,” Jackley said.
Jackley was also a State’s Attorney earlier in his career in Jones and Haakon counties.
“I look forward to stepping in, in January it’s been a good transition. Mark Vargo, who is serving as interim Attorney General, has been gracious to allow the transition to happen, he’s part of the DCI Director hiring committee, and so I think those are all going in the right direction,” Jackley said.
Along with an acting Attorney General, South Dakota currently has an acting DCI Director.
A position Jackley will be ready to fill shortly after he is sworn into office.