US lawmaker convicted of manslaughter

Published December 10, 2003

WASHINGTON, Dec 9: A Republican Congressman said on Tuesday he was resigning from Congress after a jury convicted him of traffic manslaughter.

Congressman Bill Janklow is a veteran Republican from South Dakota who represented the ruling party in the state for 30 years.

On Monday, a jury in South Dakota convicted him of second-degree manslaughter, reckless driving, ignoring a stop sign and speeding, in an Aug 16 traffic accident that killed a 55-year-old farmer.

The victim, Randolph Scott, was a retired soldier of the US Army.

Mr Janklow’s resignation will obviate any action by the House ethics committee, which would have asked him to step down if he had not resigned.

Prosecutors said the 64-year-old lawmaker’s car was travelling more than 70 mph when he crashed into the victim’s motorcycle. He faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine at his Jan 20 sentencing.

A fixture in South Dakota politics for 30 years, Mr. Janklow seemed stunned when the verdict was read. He left the courtroom, got in a vehicle driven by his son and left the courthouse without uttering a word to reporters.

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