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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Dakota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sunday, March 8, 2020

Pierre Man Charged with Assaulting Federal Officers

United States Attorney Ron Parsons announced that a Pierre, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for Assaulting, Resisting, and Impeding a Federal Officer and Influencing a Federal Officer by Threat.

Richard Barela, age 28, was indicted on February 11, 2020.  He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark A. Moreno on March 4, 2020, and pled not guilty to the Indictment.

The maximum penalty upon conviction is up to 20 years in federal prison and/or a $250,000 fine, 3 years of supervised release, and $100 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.  Restitution may also be ordered.

The Indictment alleges that on January 14, 2020, Barela did forcibly assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, and interfere with U.S. Marshals by using a knife, while the U.S. Marshals were engaged in the performance of their official duties.  The Indictment further alleges that during the incident, Barela threatened to murder the U.S. Marshals.

The charges are merely accusations and Barela is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

The investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Pierre Police Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Kirsten Jasper is prosecuting the case.   

Barela was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service pending trial.  A trial date has not been set.

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Updated March 8, 2020