AR-News:Rodeo Coach Charged With Raping Children

Pat Wolff wolffnm at
Tue Jun 24 08:52:40 EDT 2003

June 24, 2003

Judge to rule on suppression motion

By Jim Holland, Rapid City Journal Staff Writer  

RAPID CITY -- A 7th Circuit judge is expected to rule
in a couple of weeks on whether statements a Rapid
City man made to an investigator are admissible in the
man's trial on multiple rape and sexual-contact

Lyle "Swede" Johnson, 60, is charged with three counts
of second-degree rape and three counts of sexual
contact with a child under the age of 16. 

Johnson, a former adviser to the Rapid City Central
High School rodeo team, was arrested in March after an
investigation that began in September of 2002.

Prosecutors said the charges relate to incidents
occurring from the late 1970s through 2002, allegedly
involving victims between the ages of 13 and 16.

Johnson's attorney, Pennington County public defender
Mike Stonefield, filed a motion to suppress possible
admissions Johnson made to a Pennington County
Sheriff's Office investigator during two interviews
before Johnson's arrest.

Judge Thomas L. Trimble said he would rule on the
motion only after attorneys on both sides of the case
file written briefs.

No trial date has been set for Johnson, who, if
convicted, faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in
prison and a $15,000 fine on each count of sexual
contact, and 25 years in prison and a $25,000 on each
count of rape.

Johnson remains in Pennington County Jail. His next
court appearance is set for Aug. 19.

Contact Jim Holland at 394-8415 or
jim.holland at
Popular rodeo coach back in court on sex-abuse charges

Rapid City, SD

The investigating officer gives his account of
interviews with a rodeo coach charged with sexual
abuse. 61 year old Lyle “Swede” Johnson is charged
with multiple counts of second degree rape and sexual
contact with children younger than 16. 
Investigating officer Mike Leach testified today
Johnson admitted to sexual involvement with seven
boys, in addition to the two he is ultimately charged
with. The defense wants those admissions suppressed
from the trial. 

The state's attorney believes there could be as many
as 30 victims in this case. 

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