IN THE MATTER OF THE CERTIFIABILITY OF BRETT JARMAN AS A SOUTH DAKOTA LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
Argued January 13, 2015.
APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE SEVENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT FALL RIVER COUNTY, SOUTH DAKOTA. HONORABLE JEFF W. DAVIS.
MARTY J. JACKLEY, Attorney General; KELLY MARNETTE, BRENT KEMPEMA, Assistant Attorney's General, Pierre, South Dakota, Attorneys for appellee Law Enforcement Officers Standards & Training Commission.
TIMOTHY J. RENSCH, Rensch Law Office, Rapid City, South Dakota, Attorneys for appellant Brett Jarman.
SEVERSON, Justice. GILBERTSON, Chief Justice, and ZINTER, and WILBUR, Justices, and KONENKAMP, Retired Justice, concur. KERN, Justice, not having been a member of the Court at the time this action was submitted to the Court, and deeming herself disqualified, did not participate.
[¶1] After a contested hearing, the Law Enforcement Officers Standards and Training Commission (Commission) denied Brett Jarman's application for law enforcement certification. Jarman appealed to the circuit court, which affirmed the Commission's decision. He appeals, asserting
that the Commission improperly based its decision on " expunged conduct." We affirm.
[¶2] Brett Jarman applied to the Commission for law enforcement certification. He sought a certification of qualification as a candidate for county sheriff. All candidates for sheriff must meet the qualifications provided for law enforcement officers in SDCL 23-3-42, including that of " good moral character[.]" SDCL 23-3-43, SDCL 23-3-43.1. On the application, Jarman acknowledged previous arrests over the years for aggravated assault, simple assault, and disorderly conduct. On February 12, 2014, the executive secretary of the Commission sent a letter to Jarman expressing concerns about Jarman's application and notifying him that the secretary would request a formal hearing before the Commission. The executive secretary expressed concern that Jarman failed to meet the " good moral character" needed for certification due to arrests for aggravated assault in 2010 and domestic violence in 2013. SDCL 23-3-42. Jarman received notice of the contested hearing from the Commission on March 11, 2014, which indicated that the hearing would address the 2010 domestic altercation, as well as the falsification of an employment application to the United States Air Marshall's Service.
[¶3] The Commission held the hearing on March 19, 2014. An attorney conducted the hearing as a hearing examiner, but the Commission was present to hear the case. At the hearing, Jarman's former girlfriend, Walleska Serafin, was the only witness called by the Commission. She testified as to events that happened in August of 2010. Jarman also testified and called two witnesses. Jarman's version of events differed completely from that of Serafin. According to Serafin, she and Jarman started a relationship in 2007. Both have experience in martial arts and met through one of Jarman's martial arts friends. By the time of the incident, they had ended their relationship due, in part, to Serafin moving to Wyoming. However, at Jarman's suggestion, they decided to attend the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally together in 2010. Serafin hoped that they might try a relationship again. After attending the rally, she returned to Jarman's house where she stayed for a few days. On the morning of her planned departure, she told Jarman that she wanted to talk to him before leaving. Jarman told her he had some things to do and left for a few hours.
[¶4] Serafin testified that upon his return, she asked him if they were going to talk soon because she had to leave. Jarman did not respond to her. Instead, he answered a call from someone whom he referred to as " babe." After hearing Jarman call that person " babe," Serafin told him that she needed to know if their relationship would ever work out. Visibly frustrated, he gave her a " chest bump." In response, she began throwing and breaking his valuable figurines. At some point during the altercation, he kicked her leg, too quickly for her to be able to deflect it. She collapsed, thinking that her leg was broken. Despite requests for her phone so she could call for help, Jarman refused to hand it to her. Instead, she had to crawl out to the front yard, after which he finally gave her the phone. She called his son. Although there was a discussion amongst the three about seeking medical help, they decided that because of an impending storm they should ...