Montana Public Radio

Kurt Alme

Active coronavirus cases by Montana County, November 10, 2020.
Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services

Republican Governor-elect Greg Gianforte has put together a task force that will help inform the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic when he assumes office in January.

The investigation continues into an alleged arson at a fire station just outside of Kalispell.
Flickr user Ariane Middel (CC-BY-2.0)

Montana's most populous county has seen a sharp increase in violent crime since the coronavirus pandemic began, driven by more domestic abuse and drug-related crimes, federal and local authorities said Tuesday.


A new federal task force formed to address high rates of missing and murdered indigenous people met in Washington, D.C. for the first time Jan. 29.

A recent Montana case highlights its limitations.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office announced Thursday it won’t pursue federal charges in the death of a young girl whose body was found near Lame Deer on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation late last year. The Office determined it could not prove foul play.

Weapons confiscated by Project Safe Neighborhoods Missoula County over the previous year, shown during a press conference, May 29, 2019.
Edward O'Brien / Montana Public Radio

The City of Missoula’s violent crime rate increased 50 percent between 2011 and 2017. Authorities blame methamphetamine for that unprecedented spike in murders, robberies and aggravated assault.

Missoula County Attorney Kirsten Pabst Wednesday shared an ugly, real world example of the kind of havoc that meth wreaks.

Voting booths at the Missoula Library.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

A Montana Assistant U.S. Attorney will serve as the state’s Election Officer for the November 6 general election.

That means Brendan McCarthy will oversee the District of Montana’s handling of allegations of election fraud and voting rights abuse.

Kirsten Pabst at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Missoula on July 19, 2018.
Maxine Speier

Last year the city of Missoula had 324 violent crimes, an increase of nearly 50 percent since 2011. Law enforcement say the meth epidemic is to blame, and Thursday announced that they’re addressing it with a local, state and federal partnership.