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Man pleads not guilty to harassment

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A St. Ignatius man is accused of repeatedly harassing a Lake County woman while he was on probation for harassing another woman in Lake County in 2017.

James Joseph McGuire, 38, entered a plea of not guilty in Polson District Court on Feb. 17 to 13 counts of privacy in communication. The first two counts were misdemeanors and the third and subsequent counts were felonies.

According to court records, a woman reported trying to end a relationship with McGuire and now had concerns for her safety. She stated that she and her husband had employed McGuire since 2018 and allowed him to stay on their property. She stated that she and McGuire began a romantic affair in the summer of 2019. 

The woman also stated that she and her husband had moved out of state that winter but later returned to their Lake County property. While out of state, she allegedly sent provocative photos of herself to McGuire and this allegedly upset McGuire. He moved off the couple’s property but kept leaving signs he’d been there and calling her from different phone numbers. 

On Nov. 13, 2020, McGuire allegedly threatened to drive to the woman’s location and end his life in her driveway. He also allegedly threatened to expose their affair to the woman’s husband. Two days later, McGuire allegedly forwarded, via text, 12 nude photos of the woman to her husband without her consent.

McGuire was still on probation for crimes involving the alleged harassment of another female in 2017. In that case, McGuire repeatedly contacted the woman in violation of a protective order.

District Judge James Manley set the case for trial July 19. McGuire is at liberty with numerous conditions in place, including having no contact with the alleged victim.

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