Jury convicts man of attempted murder for Eureka shooting
KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) — A jury has convicted a man of shooting his ex-girlfriend and a man during what prosecutors say was a jealous rage.
The Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell reports 41-year-old Michael Gilbert Ilk, of Alberta, was convicted Thursday of two counts of attempted deliberate homicide and two counts of aggravated assault.
Prosecutors say he fired about 10 shots at his ex-girlfriend, Hadassah Pereslete, and Tyler Wilson, at a construction site where Pereslete worked. Pereslete and Wilson, both of Eureka, each were hit twice during the April 15, 2015, shooting.
Ilk followed them to the Eureka Law Enforcement Center, where he was arrested.
Defense attorneys argued that Wilson shot first and that Ilk fired back in self-defense.
Daines hosts coal meeting after Montana left out by feds
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Montana residents can comment on a potential overhaul of the federal government’s coal leasing program during a Tuesday meeting hosted by U.S. Sen. Steve Daines.
Montana has the largest coal resources in the nation. But the Treasure State was left off an Interior Department list of events where the public was asked to weigh in on the changes.
Daines told The Associated Press the government proposal could have a major impact on the state’s economy and affect the livelihoods of thousands of people.
The Republican lawmaker says comments at Tuesday’s meeting at Montana State University in Billings will be recorded, transcribed and submitted to the Interior Department.
Both supporters and critics of the industry plan to attend.
New coal lease sales are suspended during the government’s years-long review process.
Great Falls homicide suspect denied new layers
GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) — A judge has denied the request of a Great Falls man charged with fatally shooting a man to have new legal representation in the case.
Branden Conrad Miesmer had sought new lawyers after pleading guilty to deliberate homicide in March without a plea agreement in the death of 26-year-old Cody Steve Bruyere.
Miesmer had argued that his court-appointed attorneys failed to communicate with him and never obtained a follow-up psychological evaluation after he complained the first test was conducted poorly.
District Judge John Kutzman shot down his argument Monday, determining that the attorneys had communicated with their client and were “perhaps too candid” with him.
Miesmer can still withdraw his guilty plea, but must do so with his current representation.
Suspect arrested for man’s beating death in Great Falls
GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) — Authorities have made an arrest in connection with the January death of a man in Great Falls.
The Great Falls Tribune reports that Brett McDermott was arrested Monday for the fatal beating of 60-year-old Bradley Boland at the victim’s home.
Court documents say McDermott walked over to a Great Falls elementary school on Jan. 8 and reported that another man had been beaten.
McDermott had initially been charged with evidence tampering for removing paper bags that police taped to his hands to preserve potential evidence.
Charging papers say DNA evidence ties McDermott to the crime.
The suspect was also charged with elder abuse after Boland was taken to a hospital for a reported fall days before his death.
Booking documents do not indicate if McDermott has hired an attorney.
Blackfeet council votes to redraft tribal constitution
GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) — The Blackfeet Tribal Business Council has voted to redraft the tribe’s constitution.
Council Chairman Harry Barnes says Monday’s 8-1 vote clears the way for the tribe to create a new form of government that would eliminate the tribal council and create elected positions for judge, a president and vice president and a 13-member legislature — all independent from each other.
Barnes says the Blackfeet had been operating under laws contained in the 1934 Indian Reorganization Act. He says under that form of government, people had no control except for elections every four years and tribal councils routinely interfered with the courts and law enforcement.
The Great Falls Tribune reports the tribal council will hold a series of meetings to inform tribal members about the content of the newly proposed constitution.
Hungry Horse man dies in weekend crash
KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) — A 31-year-old man died after his car struck a farm truck from behind on US Highway 2 in Hungry Horse.
The Montana Highway Patrol reports the farm truck had slowed to make a turn at 12:10 a.m. Saturday and the car rear-ended the truck at a high-rate of speed. Flathead County officials say Denver Ray Heffington of Hungry Horse died at Kalispell Regional Medical Center shortly after the crash.
The patrol says 52-year-old Columbia Falls man who was driving the truck was injured, but was not taken to the hospital.