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Convicted pastor loses appeal to state Supreme Court

PIERRE (AP) -- A former Brookings pastor convicted of having sexual contact with a child has narrowly lost his appeal to the South Dakota Supreme Court.

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PIERRE (AP) - A former Brookings pastor convicted of having sexual contact with a child has narrowly lost his appeal to the South Dakota Supreme Court.

The Capital Journal reports justices recently voted 3-2 to reject the appeal of 39-year-old Timothy Bariteau.

Bariteau was accused of a crime against a child younger than 16 in spring 2014, when he was a pastor at Morningside Community Church in Brookings. He was arrested later that year in California, where he'd been living, and convicted and sentenced last year to eight years in prison.

Bariteau argued in his appeal that his actions didn't meet the definition of sexual contact in state law. The majority of the justices disagreed.

Attorney General Marty Jackley says the close vote might indicate that the statute needs to be clarified.

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