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Lake County District Court news for Feb. 4, 2010

Judge Deborah Kim Christopher dealt with the following cases on Jan. 28:

• James Dean Brown, 16, of Ronan, was found guilty of five counts of felony attempted sexual intercourse without consent. He was sentenced to the Department of Corrections for 50 years with 38 years suspended on each count to run concurrently.

He was ordered to be placed at Pine Hills in Miles City until age 18 and then will immediately enroll in the sex offender treatment program at Pine Hills. He is designated as at Level III sex offender and will complete phases I and II of the Sex Offender Treatment Program before he is eligible for parole.

According to court records, on May 12, a Lake County Sheriff's Detective and Juvenile Probation Officer received a report from a Tribal Police Detective which alleged a 16 year-old male named James Brown had molested at least five young females at his mother's day care. 

The Sheriff's Detective observed tapes and medical examination documents conducted by a resource center that specializes in children who have been victims of sexual abuse.

The detective observed that all the children, ranging from 3 to 8-years old, stated that they knew Brown as the son of their day care provider and that he touched them inappropriately and that he had shown them his private.

Brown admitted in an interview with the detective that he knew the five young victims from his mother's day care and that he did stuff to all of them. Brown told the detective that these acts occurred over the course of a month just prior to the reports made in early December of 2008. Brown also admitted to intercourse with them under a blanket or in a closet.

James Joseph Sabolish, 24, of Ronan, was found guilty of felony driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs and misdemeanor habitual traffic offender operating motor vehicle. He was sentenced to the DOC for placement in an appropriate correctional facility for 13 months. In addition, Sabolish will be placed on formal supervised probation for three years for the DUI offense. For the habitual traffic offender offense, he was sentenced to the LCJ for one year with all suspended but 20 days. Sentencing will run concurrently.

According to court records, the charges stem from a Dec. 9, 2008 incident when a Lake County Sheriff's Deputy stopped Sabolish in Charlo for failure to maintain in his lane of traffic and for an obstructed windshield.

The deputy observed several indicators of alcohol influence. Sabolish's breath smelled of an alcoholic beverage, his eyes were bloodshot and watery and his speech was slow and slurred.

Sabolish admitted to drinking a six-pack of beer and later changed is estimate to one beer and two vodka drinks. Sabolish's performance on two field sobriety maneuvers indicated that he was under the influence. His BAC resulted in .183%.

After being placed under arrest, Sabolish underwent several physical sobriety tests, which further indicated that he was under the influence of alcohol. He gave an intoxilyzer test that showed BAC results of .169% and .186%. 

Court records indicated that Sabolish had three prior DUI convictions and that he was designated a habitual traffic offender on June 3, 2008 until Oct. 20, 2011.

Mathew J. Sides, 19 of Blain, Wash., received a deferred sentence of two years and was ordered to serve 10 days in the Lake County Jail or Lewis and Clark Jail for felony possession of explosives.

According to court records, there were several calls made to Lake County Dispatch on Aug. 27 regarding explosions along Terrace Lake Road, east of Ronan. A witness followed an SUV with no doors and got a license plate number of the vehicle. Law enforcement officers later located the vehicle at a Ronan home and conducted interviews with the occupants, including Sides, who admitted to lighting sparkler bombs and placing them in mailboxes.

A Lake County Sheriff's Deputy confirmed that two mailboxes were destroyed by explosives, which were strong enough to send debris more than 150 feet from the blast site.


Judge C.B. McNeil dealt with the following cases on Wednesday, Jan. 27:

Roger Dale Oldperson, 41, of Arlee, was found guilty of felony driving under the influence - fourth or subsequent offense. He was sentenced to the DOC for placement in an appropriate correctional facility for 13 months and to the DOC for three years, with all of that time suspended, to run consecutive to the 13-month sentence.

According to court records, Oldperson was pulled over on U.S.  Highway 93 by Flathead Tribal Police officer, who believed Oldperson was driving despite a revoked driver's license. A records check confirmed the revoked license and a traffic stop was initiated.

The officer noticed a strong smell of alcohol coming from Oldperson, who refused a breath test. During booking at the Lake County Jail, he did not pass other sobriety checks administered at the Lake County Detention Center. A records check confirmed that Oldperson has at least three prior DUI convictions.

Bryon Alexander Johnson, 26, of Dayton, changed his plea to guilty of the amended offense of felony accountability theft. 

Sentencing is set for Thursday, March 3 at 9 a.m. According to the plea agreement, Johnson will be committed to the DOC for five years with none of that time suspended. He also is being recommended for Connections Corrections, followed by a pre-release and sentencing will run concurrent with a sentencing in Flathead County.

According to court records, the charge stems from an Oct. 14, 2008 incident when a man contacted the sheriff's department to report that Johnson had come to his house the previous night and sold him two Apple computers.

One of the computers had a user name different from Johnson's. Johnson told this man that he and his little brother and a friend had committed the burglaries in the Jette and Polson areas. Serial numbers on the computers matched the numbers from the ones that had been reported as stolen.

In an interview with Johnson by a detective, he admitted to selling the computers and that he had knowledge that they were stolen.

Marvin Camel, Jr. 30, of Ronan, pleaded not guilty to felony sexual intercourse without consent. Bond was reduced to $5,000.

An omnibus hearing is set for Wednesday, Feb. 17 at 9 a.m. 

According to court records, the charge stems from an incident on Jan. 22 when a Lake County Sheriff's Detective responded to Ronan's St. Luke Hospital when a patient stated that she had been raped by Marvin Camel.She told the detective that she was at the Pablo Bar with a friend and that they had gotten a ride from Camel with the intention of going to a party. At some point, Camel and the friend began arguing about being lost and he agreed to take them home. Camel took the friend home, but then stopped on a dark secluded road and tried to kiss the female. She stated that she was afraid of what Camel would do to her if she resisted. He continued and threatened her and said "if I bash in the back of your head in, you wouldn't be crying and telling me no," when she resisted.

She kept telling him that she was scared and was able to flee from the vehicle into a snowy field. Camel eventually drove off and she then called the police at a nearby residence.

A Tribal Police Officer responded to the residence. Camel was arrested and agreed to a swab during booking. He stated that "nothing happened."

The swab from the sexual assault examination were submitted to the Forensic Science Division of the Department of Justice and analyzed for DNA. The analysis of the swab determined that the woman's DNA was present. During an interview with a Lake County Detective, Camel admitted being in the vehicle with the woman, and that they may have kissed, but stated that nothing sexual occurred.

Cheyenne Curtis Morton, 19, of Polson, was found guilty of felony burglary and received a deferred sentence of three years and is to serve 14 days in the LCJ within one year of Jan. 27, 2010.

According to court records, the charge stems from a Jan. 13 incident when a boy called 911 after he came home from school to find that the door to the garage was open, and a flat screen TV, Xbox and several games were missing.

Two days later, the boy received a tip from a friend at school that someone had bought a new TV from Cote Wheeler, but didn't know that it was stolen.

The next day, Cheyenne Morton returned the TV to the owners. In an interview with Morton, he told the detective that he drove to the residence with his older brother and admitted to taking the stolen items to an apartment. The Xbox and games were found in a search of the apartment.

Matthew Julian Michel, 21, of St. Ignatius, changed his plea to guilty of felony burglary and to the amended offense misdemeanor theft. For the burglary offense, he received a deferred sentence of three years and for the theft, he was sentenced to six months in jail with all suspended except seven days. Michel was also ordered to serve 20 days in jail and was fined $470.

According to court records, on June 6, a Lake County Sheriff's Deputy responded to a burglary report at Albert Custom Cabinets shop in Pablo. The owner of the shop told the deputy that things looked out of order that morning, and realized that someone had broken in the night before.

A window on the south side of the building was ajar, with tire tracks on the grass outside near the window. Several tools, two computers, some DVD's, two guitars and some money were claimed to be missing by the shop owner.

On June 8, an employee of the Jolly Pack Rat called the Sheriff's office and said someone had tried to sell the tools matching the description of the tools stolen from the shop. The employee convinced the person to leave the tools and come back in a little while.

Meanwhile, deputies responded to the Jolly Pack Rat, examined the tools and after waiting for several minutes, gave up and left the pawn shop. They then observed a man matching the description of the suspect enter the pawn shop. After speaking with the man, identified as Michel, he admitted to breaking into the cabinet shop and taking the tools. 

Kermit Medicine Cloud Kao, 55, of Kalispell, had his sentence of felony incest revoked and was committed to the DOC for 10 years with five years suspended. The sentence imposed is to run concurrently with the sentencing in Flathead County.

According to court records, Kao violated his parole by being arrested and charged with three counts of felony criminal distribution of dangerous drugs in Flathead County on April 11, 2009. On May 20, 2009, he was arrested after an altercation and is being charged with felony aggravated assault. 

The court ordered Kao to pay restitution of $100 per year while incarcerated in the Montana State Prison and $25 per month while on parole for the payment to the Department of Family Services for costs incurred in the care and treatment of the victim in the aggravated assault offense.

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