Minnesota men charged for assaulting USD student

Minnesota men charged for assaulting USD student By From P&D Staff Reports Two Minnesota men will stand trial Sept. 16-17 in Clay County Circuit Court after pleading not guilty to assaulting a University of South Dakota student.

Scott Beckman and Mitchell Rivard of Inver Grove Heights, MN, are charged with aggravated assault. They entered their pleas of not guilty before Judge Arthur Rusch in the Clay County Courthouse.

Aggravated assault is a Class 3 felony punishable by up to 15 years in the state penitentiary and a $15,000 fine.

An Aug. 25 motions hearing has been cancelled, and the men will move directly to trial, according to Tami Bern, Clay County state's attorney.

Beckman and Rivard are charged in connection with an April 27 incident involving USD student Jeff Strong. The defendants allegedly assaulted Strong outside a dorm.

Strong received numerous head and facial injuries. He was taken by ambulance to Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls.

Strong was a member of the USD football team and a resident assistant at Norton Hall.

Beckman and Rivard were 21 and 20, respectively, at the time of the alleged crime, Bern said.

Both Beckman and Rivard are free on $25,000 cash bond.

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