South Dakota Supreme Court Justice Steven L. Zinter has passed away from complications related to surgery. According to Governor Dennis Daugaard's office, Zinter was the first sitting justice on the state’s high court to die in office since 1976. Zinter was appointed to the court in 2002 by then-Governor Bill Janklow.

According to a statement released from the State of South Dakota, "The Supreme Court and Unified Judicial System staff are heartbroken at the loss of such a fine person. The Supreme Court extends its sympathies to Justice Zinter’s family and friends and especially to his wife Sandy and daughters Sarah and Kelly."

Chief Justice David Gilbertson described Zinter as, "A giant in South Dakota’s legal community and judiciary and possessed a positive personality the likes of which I have never seen. We are all better for knowing him.”

Funeral arrangements are pending and will be announced at a later date. Governor Daugaard is requesting that all flags in the state be flown at half-staff in honor of Supreme Court Justice Zinter. Zinter was 68 years old.

Source: Associated Press

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