S.D. Sheriff's Deputy Killed During Highway Pursuit

Feb. 4, 2024
Few details have been released surrounding the incident that killed Moody County Chief Deputy Ken Prorok, who had been with the agency since 2016.

Source The Daily Republic, Mitchell, S.D.

FLANDREAU, S.D. — Law enforcement agencies across South Dakota are in mourning after a Moody County sheriff's deputy was killed in the line of duty on Friday.

The South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) has identified Deputy Ken Prorok as the law enforcement officer who was killed during a pursuit near Interstate 29 and South Dakota Highway 34, commonly referred to as the Madison-Colman exit.

Few details regarding the circumstances of Prorok's death have been released. Attorney General Marty Jackley confirmed that 40-year-old Sioux Falls resident Joseph Hoek was arrested in connection to the incident.

Charges against Hoek have not yet been filed. He's being held in the Lake County Jail pending a Monday morning court appearance in Madison.

"Ken was a husband, father, grandfather, and well-respected leader in his community," Jackley said in a statement released Saturday afternoon. "All law enforcement is mourning the loss of Ken, and we send our condolences and prayers to his family and agency."

Prorok had served as a Moody County sheriff's deputy since 2016, and had been named the agency's chief deputy as early as 2019.

His death sent shockwaves through the region, eliciting emotional responses from across South Dakota.

"Ken was a great family man and led a life of service to others," state Sen. Casey Crabtree, of Madison, said in a tweet Saturday.

"Prayers from our family for the Prorok family and all of our first responders."

The state lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police on Friday shared their heartbreak for Prorok's friends and family.

"The South Dakota State Fraternal Order of Police is heartbroken for the Moody County Sheriff's Office," the organization posted to Facebook.

"Details are few; a Deputy Sheriff was killed in the line of duty today. Our prayers are with his family and co-workers."

Mike Walsh, president of the FOP's state lodge, added his condolences, posting to Facebook: "Rest easy. We have the watch."

Before he served as a sheriff's deputy, Prorok was a long-time athletics coach at Dakota State University in Madison.

He spent more than a decade on the coaching staff for the university's baseball and softball teams, earning more than 250 victories over 13 seasons.

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(c)2024 The Daily Republic (Mitchell, S.D.)

Visit The Daily Republic (Mitchell, S.D.) at www.mitchellrepublic.com

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