Montana Public Radio

crime

Montana Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike McGrath.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

Gov. Steve Bullock Wednesday issued a directive aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 in Montana’s Correctional facilities. But it was dismissed as too little, too late by the American Civil Liberties Union of Montana and disability rights advocates.

The Montana Supreme Court weighed in late in the afternoon.

Butte-Silver Bow Detention Center
Josh Burnham

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — The chief justice of the Montana Supreme Court is asking city and county judges to consider releasing from jail as many offenders as they can to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus.

Chief Justice Mike McGrath wrote to judges asking them to review their jail rosters for inmates that could be released.

The state Missing Indigenous Persons Task Force has awarded its first $25,000 grant to Blackfeet Community College to develop what will be the first piece in a statewide tribal network tracking missing Native American persons.

A federal task force created to improve investigations of missing and murdered indigenous people on Mar. 2 announced a series of listening sessions and consultations, including one in Billings.

Missoula Police Department Interim Chief Mike Colyer speaks to the press Feb. 25, 2020 about the department's investigation of a Feb. 12 report from a police officer that his patrol car was fired upon.
Edward O'Brien / Montana Public Radio

Missoula police still have no conclusive evidence that a city patrol car was actually shot last week. The ongoing investigation is raising more questions than answers.

 


A group of government agencies and Yellowstone county organizations have released a plan they say will cut back on drug-related crime and addiction in the region. 

Brandon Bryant was arrested Feb. 11 for allegedly threatening Missoula city officials.
Missoula County

A man accused of threatening and intimidating Missoula public officials was arrested this week and made his initial court appearance Thursday.

It's a case of alleged harassment that’s forcing public officials to reexamine the delicate balance of freedom of speech and public safety.

A Missoula police officer stands at a barricade in front of the courthouse, Feb. 12, 2020. Police say shots were fired at a police car earlier in the day.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

Much of downtown Missoula was on lockdown Wednesday after a police officer reported his patrol car was fired upon.

Missoula Police Sgt. Travis Welsh says the officer was driving northbound on the 400 block of Woody Street at about 9:45 a.m. when the rear window of his cruiser was shot out.

 

The Montana Missing Idigenous Persons Task Force hosted a public meeting in Billings Feb. 6. Some community members pressed for Native people to form a task force of their own.

Hands holding a phone.
(PD)

A fake bomb threat at the Kalispell Walmart Wednesday was initially labeled by law enforcement as swatting incident, where pranksters hijack phone numbers in order to report fake threats to police. But the bomb threat was actually part of a scam to extort money out of a Montana correctional officer.

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