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Dist. 8 Dem Skoglund Busted in Sex Sting; Party Chair Demands Withdrawal from Race

Uh oh, District 8: you may need a new Democratic candidate for state House:

(screen cap from WDAY TV, 2014.04.03)
(screen cap from WDAY TV, 2014.04.03)

Police have arrested two men accused of soliciting sex for money, after a prostitution sting in Moorhead.

58-year-old Mark Hayes of Harwood and 61-year-old David Skoglund of Canova South Dakota are each facing one count of solicitation of prostitution - A misdemeanor.

Police arrested them last week after an undercover sting for johns at a hotel in the 600 block of 30th avenue south in Moorhead ["Prostitution Sting Leads to Two Men Being Arrested," WDAY TV, 2014.04.03].

I don't know how many David Skoglunds there are in the greater Canova area, but David Skoglund of 24352 248th Ave, Canova, is one of District 8's Democratic candidates for House.

Update 11:17 CDT: Skoglund is keeping state Dems chair Deb Knecht up late. A press release from party central popped into my inbox 13 minutes ago with this confirmation that candidate Skoglund and accused sex-trafficking customer Skoglund are the same dude, plus a pretty clear statement that he should knock off activities:

South Dakota Democratic Party chair Deb Knecht released the following statement after David Skoglund, a Democrat running for District 8 state house, was arrested in a prostitution sting:

"The South Dakota Democratic Party did not know of Mr. Skoglund's illegal activity, and we unequivocally condemn his deplorable actions. We demand he remove his name from the ballot immediately" [SDDP press release, 2014.04.04].

To comply with Knecht's demand, Skoglund must submit a written, notarized withdrawal request to the Secretary of State. Skoglund could do so right away Saturday morning; I hear the Secretary's team will be at work Saturday. (Sorry, that's my bad.)


  1. Flipper 2014.04.04

    Oopsie. Not good news. But got to give David credit for still being "active" in his 60s.

  2. Bob Newland 2014.04.04

    At least he was willing to pay for it. There are a lot of folks out there who think that sex is an entitlement.

  3. Bob Klein 2014.04.04

    At this point, the candidate is the only one who can get the name off the ballot. (Without regard to participation in illegal activity)

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.04

    ...and the only people who can fill a vacancy once the candidate withdraws are the county party central committee members of the district... in this case Sanborn, Miner, Lake, and Moody.

    Of course, Indies can also still file petitions.

  5. Jessie 2014.04.04

    Deb Knecht is quoted as follows: "The South Dakota Democratic Party did not know of Mr. Skoglund's illegal activity, and we unequivocally condemn his deplorable actions."

    Unless Skoglund has already admitted to a crime, she is forgetting that here in the US, we have this pesky little practice of assuming innocence until proven guilty.

    Guilt or innocence aside, this guy's political career is toast because the court of public opinion has already reached a verdict. I'm not defending Skoglund, whose existence I just learned of this evening. But let's do this properly please.

  6. mike from iowa 2014.04.05

    What a conumdrum. Wingnuts should be in favor of prostitution. The ladies do the work and their pimps collect the lion's share of the money. None of this equal pay for equal work shit. Capitalist amerika! Gotta love it.

  7. John Tsitrian 2014.04.05

    Nice presumption of innocence, Knecht. This is the same chair who gave Susan Wismer a stops-out rollout while blowing off Joe Lowe with a perfunctory sentence mentioning he's also a candidate. Dems can do better for a party chair.

  8. Bill Dithmer 2014.04.05

    If prostitution was legal, the cops wouldn't have to break the law to catch someone breaking the law. This seems to be the most reliable, and most used, tool that law enforcement knows how to use whenit it comes to either sex or drugs.

    Now I'm not going to judge whether the contract between two consenting adults for sex is right or wrong. What I am saying is that when the government takes the position of the pimp, they should be treated like a pimp in a court of law.

    I'm not crazy, well maybe just a little. I do know these laws will never be changed. In fact in one of those countries on the west coast, Washington State or Oregon, the law officers can go as far as a "happy ending" to get their arrest.

    Doing drugs and buying or selling sex, that's just good old fashioned police work. But, if you aren't a cop those things are a crime.WTF.

    The Blindman

  9. Rorschach 2014.04.05

    He went to Moorhead. Honest mistake. Next time he'll go to Nevada.

  10. Rorschach 2014.04.05

    Mark Hayes looks like a politician. Or a minister.

  11. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.05

    According to WDAY, "Hayes is the information technology director at Forum Communications Company, which owns the Forum and WDAY." There's an awkward day at work.

  12. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.05

    Tom, I knew that was coming.

  13. Sam 2 2014.04.05

    If he would have to to Neveda he would not had been arrested. He should have known what he was doing was illegal in Minnesota.

  14. Douglas Wiken 2014.04.05

    A guy running for office who gets caught with his pants down is too ignorant or stupid or selfish to be in any public office.

  15. Roger Cornelius 2014.04.05

    Fellow Democrats

    We need to to defend Skoglund with a little Republican type spin. You know, something like he didn't actually have sex with the prostitute. He was on medication and can't be responsible for his actions.

    Speaking of sex stings, some may remember the Rapid City and strip bar Shotgun Willie's fiasco a couple of months ago.

    Rapid City police made 246 visits to Shotgun Willie's hoping to catch them providing lap dances. After all was said and done there were 3 or 4 citations issued and Willie's license was suspended for a short time.

    Lucky undercover cops, huh? Men were lining up to volunteer for the next sting, of course their justification for volunteering was to save taxpayer money and keep the cops on the street where they belong.

  16. Douglas Wiken 2014.04.05

    Some police agency somewhere or some other government agency recently decided that police officers having sex with prostitutes would no longer be overlooked.

  17. Joan Brown 2014.04.05

    Blindman, I am a cranky granny and I have been thinking along those lines for several year. This state/country has so many really stupid laws it is pathetic, and they want to keep adding more.

  18. Charlie Hoffman 2014.04.05

    Douglas the Legislature in Hawaii just put a stop to Cops hooking up with Hookers while on duty. They did not stop the undercover occasional drug use which I'm told is needed in order to gain entrance into inner circles finding out where the King Pins are.

  19. ChopperJohn 2014.04.05

    Unless the sting operation represented themselves as under legal age, this is another "crime" without victims. The enforcement people are allowed to lie in order to trick the (now) victim into acqueceance. Really it's just a religious anti-sex law which I could see any male playing along with just to see what the deal was. Unless the act of sex was consummated, I see no harm to religious, sociological, or state law. The religious law that we have enacted in order to enforce a personal moral choice has become a tool to destroy good and decent family's with decades of service to both their family and their communities. My sympathies and empathy to the victims of this "sting" operation. What a waste of law enforcement time, all for the publicity. And after the reaction of the Dem chairperson, it's time to switch to a party that presumes innocence until proven guilty. That will be difficult.

  20. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.05

    "Chopper", I can see any man playing along with such an offer... to be a criminal. I can see a married man playing along with such an offer to be an adulterer. I can see a political man playing with such an offer to be utterly lacking in the intelligence and prudence necessary to be an effective legislator.

    A person who gets caught in a prostitution sting is not a victim of anything other than his own stupidity and horndoggery.

  21. Deb Geelsdottir 2014.04.05

    As a flaming liberal, I am in favor of legal prostitution. I'm not in favor of prostitution, but I don't think it is possible to eliminate it. Because of that, legalized is the better way. Here is my thinking:

    A high percentage of prostitutes do not wish to be so. In fact, most child slavery involves children forced into prostitution. In addition, another chunk of sex slaves are vulnerable immigrants brought or smuggled into, this country under false pretenses.

    If prostitution was legalized, including regulated and taxed, I think involuntary prostitution would be greatly reduced, and those whose adult choice is the sex trade would be safer and healthier.

    What do you think?

  22. Sandra Banish 2014.04.06

    The truth of the matter is this:
    The law is the law!
    If you don't like the laws change them!
    Don't break them!
    Simple as that!
    Now with prostitution, It is not a victim-less crime.
    It has many victims.
    Simple as that.

  23. Douglas Wiken 2014.04.06

    Sure, legalize prostitution and again, license users and require purchases to be made with debit cards purchased at County offices. Do the same with gambling, booze, and Marijuana.

  24. Roger Cornelius 2014.04.06

    Why not legalize prostitution in South Dakota, we already have legalized crony corruption.

  25. Rick Jensen 2014.04.10

    There is no reason for any guy to get caught in an online prostitution sting because all online prostitution sting ads have flaws in them that can be exploited. If guys would do their due diligence and study the ads they can quickly see the flaws. There are many flaws in online sting ads but I will give you just two. First, online sting ads never offer both incall and outcall. Reason being the cops have to get you into the motel room so they can get you on audio and video tape. Secondly, no online sting ad ever clearly shows the face of the woman in the ad. Reason being they are not going to show the face of the female undercover officer in the ad. There are several more flaws to these online ads but if guys just were aware of the two flaws I just gave you then cops would never catch one guy in an online prostitution sting.

  26. Sandra Banish 2014.04.10

    Say What?
    Prostitution is against the law!
    The guy got caught!
    If you pay for sex, just maybe it will be a police sting and your picture will get posted in the media.

    So, Rick are you talking from experience?

  27. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.10

    An even easier way to avoid getting caught in an online prostitution sting: don't go shopping for online prostitution.

  28. Roger Cornelius 2014.04.10

    Rick Jensen are you related to Sen. Phil Jensen?

    Anyway, Rick sounds like a frequent flier of prostitution sites.

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