Suspect arrested in Tuesday assault; victim remains in critical condition

The Sioux Falls Police Department said arriving officers found the victim unconscious with life-threatening injuries.


SIOUX FALLS — A Sioux Falls man is facing felony charges after authorities say he assaulted another, leaving the victim with a life-threatening brain injury.

Jacob Thin Elk, 30, of Sioux Falls, was arrested Thursday afternoon in connection with the assault.

Authorities say the attack took place Tuesday night in the 1700 block of West 12th Street. Shortly after 10:20 p.m., police found a 49-year-old male victim in a motel room breathing, but unconscious. The man was taken to a hospital, where it was discovered he had suffered a life-threatening brain injury.

The man remains in critical condition as of Friday morning, April 7.

On Thursday, police spokesman Sam Clemens said detectives were working to piece together what took place in the room and identify suspects. Though Clemens did not release any additional information Friday regarding the assault, he said authorities were able to obtain a search warrant for Thin Elk before taking him into custody.


Thin Elk currently faces two counts of aggravated assault on the case. If convicted, the Class 3 felonies carry a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison plus fines of up to $60,000.

He’s being held in the Minnehaha County Jail both on a $50,000 cash-only bond as well as for a warrant in a separate case.

A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on local news in Sioux Falls. He also writes regional news spanning across the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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