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Noem Pardons Sex Offender Convicted in 1994

South Dakota Searchlight reports Governor Kristi Noem has issued 268 pardons in her five years in Pierre. Among those pardons is a Georgia resident who was convicted in 1994 of sexual contact with a minor:

There were 11 pardons issued on Oct. 11, 2023. Among them was a pardon for Terra Lynn Eagle Feather, who opted against a virtual meeting and drove from Georgia to Sioux Falls in March with her 2-year-old granddaughter to attend her pardon hearing.

She told the parole board that she’d spent decades raising her family and steering clear of trouble, and she earned a unanimous vote from the board to clear her 29-year-old conviction for sexual contact with a child younger than 16. It was her second request for a pardon, the first coming 10 years before.

Two weeks after her hearing, Eagle Feather told South Dakota Searchlight that she felt it was important for the board to see her face-to-face.

“I wanted them to see me,” she said. “I wanted them to see that I’m not that same 20-year-old any more. I’m a 49-year-old woman. I have a family now. If it had been in Rapid City and it was a 24-hour drive, I still would have made it” [John Hult, “Noem Issues 40 More Pardons Since April,” South Dakota Searchlight, 2023.11.03].

Eagle Feather still appears on the Georgia sex offender registry. Sex offenders seeking a pardon in Georgia have to undergo an application process separate from that of all other pardon-seekers, including a psychosexual examination and polygraph test. South Dakota’s pardon board “may request” sex offenders applying for pardons to submit to a psychosexual evaluation and polygraph test.

In pardoning this diddler of youth, Governor Noem may be warming up for a much tougher sex offender pardon, one for her friend and poster child for Republican pedophilia Joel Koskan, who is serving nine years in Springfield for repeatedly boinking his daughter.

South Dakota Inmate Locator, record for Joel Koskan, retrieved 2023.11.04.
South Dakota Inmate Locator, record for Joel Koskan, retrieved 2023.11.04.
South Dakota Sex Offender Registry, record for Joel Koskan, retrieved 2023.11.04.
South Dakota Sex Offender Registry, record for Joel Koskan, retrieved 2023.11.04.

Will Noem pardon Koskan before she leaves office, or will she make him wait 29 years as Little Feather had to, until 2052?


  1. Eve Fisher 2023-11-04

    Well, I’m hoping for 25 more years.

  2. grudznick 2023-11-04

    Any excuse to take young Mr. Koskan over the coals is a good one. Even this “news” blogging about Ms. Eagle Feather, who at 20 must have made some young 15 year old man’s prom date a memorable one.

  3. Michelle Kalehzan 2023-11-05

    If she pardons this child rapist she deserves to go straight to Hell. There is no pardoning a pedophile who stole an adopted little girl’s childhood innocence and trust. He needs to sit in prison until he’s 98.

  4. Jackie 2023-11-05

    I feel the phrase “boinking his daughter” demeans his victim. He raped her. Just say that. He raped his daughter.

  5. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2023-11-05

    Note: the charge was incest, not rape. There’s no convenient verb for committing incest. “Boink” ridicules the boinker.

  6. bearcreekbat 2023-11-05

    The term “incest” encompasses an overly broad a range of behavior. SDCL 22-22A-2 defines the crime of incest as:

    Any persons, eighteen years of age or older, who knowingly engage in a mutually consensual act of sexual penetration with each other:

    (1) Who are not legally married; and

    (2) Who are within degrees of consanguinity within which marriages are, by the laws of this state, declared void pursuant to § 25-1-6;

    are guilty of incest. Incest is a Class 5 felony.

    Such a law is reminiscent of laws prohibiting sodomy between mutually consenting adults, as well as laws prohibiting interracial or gay marriage between mutually consenting adults. I would think such incest laws are just as susceptible to a similar constitutional challenge as were the successful challenges to sodomy laws, and laws against interracial and gay marriage. What consenting adults decide to do in the privacy of their own bedrooms may well be beyond the control of lawmakers that have religious or moral objections to such behavior.

    But obviously any sort of sexual abuse of a related child too young to consent to anything is a despicable act. Calling that criminal act “incest” seems to minimize how terrible such abuse actually is. South Dakota law does increase the penalty for committing incest with someone under 18 years old by classifying and defining such behaviors as “aggravated incest.” SDCL 22-22A-3. Yet it would seem that this crime really belongs in the code as an aggravated, severely punished, criminal offense in the category of child abuse rather than being part of the overly broad classification of “incest.”

  7. Tim 2023-11-05

    I see the Grand Old Pedifile party is at it again.

  8. Eric 2023-11-07

    The correct term is “rape”, not “boink”.

    A child can not consent, so an adult having sex with a child is rape.

    The article you linked to (that you also wrote) repeatedly called him a rapist.

    Your wording makes it seem like the sexual contact was consensual.

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