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Mother, son plead guilty to fatal wreck charges Mother, son plead guilty to fatal wreck charges

POLSON — It was a case of back-to-back guilty pleas for a mother and her son from St. Ignatius charged with crimes stemming from a fatal car wreck last January. Rope Kinkade Ardis, 19, and Roberta Virginia Asencio, 40, appeared at District Court in Polson on April 6 for change of plea hearings. Ardis pled guilty to felony vehicular homicide while under the influence, while his mother, Asencio, pleaded guilty to felony tampering with witnesses and informants. According to court records, on Jan. 23, 2021, Lake County emergency services were paged out to a report of a one vehicle rollover on Back Road south of Polson. At the scene Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Aaron Day observed that...


Lesage’s sentence reduced

POLSON — A St. Ignatius woman who admitted to causing a traffic accident that killed another motorist has a chance to avoid prison. Darlene Lesage, 68, pleaded guilty at District Court in Polson on July 15, 2021 to vehicular homicide while under the influence. The plea was entered as part of an agreeme...


Judicial appointment process begins

MONTANA — When Montana Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike McGrath notified Gov. Greg Gianforte March 7 of Judge Jim Manley’s pending retirement, the announcement set in motion a relatively new process for judicial appointments.  In 2021, the legislature passed, and the governor signed into ...


Judge Manley approaches retirement Judge Manley approaches retirement

POLSON — For eight years now, District Court Judge Jim Manley has entered the courtrooms in Lake and Sanders County wearing the same black robe his predecessor, C.B. McNeil, wore for 29 years before him. The robe represents both tradition and responsibility.  “I never wanted this job,&rdq...


Cruz sentenced to three years for assault Cruz sentenced to three years for assault

POLSON — A Polson man was committed at District Court in Polson on March 30 to the Montana Department of Corrections for three years with none of that time suspended for assaulting his father. Eric Brian Cruz, 49, pleaded guilty to partner or family member assault during an earlier court appearance. ...


Wilson sentenced to time suspended

POLSON — A Polson man who was accused of assaulting a partner or family member will avoid any more jail time if he can stay out of trouble for the next five years. Christian Lee Wilson, 24, entered a plea of guilty at District Court in Polson on Jan. 26 to the amended charge of felony criminal endan...


Whitworth sentenced for vehicular homicide Whitworth sentenced for  vehicular homicide

POLSON — A Polson woman was sentenced at District Court in Polson on March 24 to the Montana State Women’s Prison for 30 years with 20 years suspended for running over and killing another woman on Halloween. Sharon Lynn Whitworth, 56, pleaded guilty to one count of vehicular homicide while under ...


Baylor sentenced to more than 6 months

MISSOULA — A Pablo man who admitted to trafficking methamphetamine and heroin in the Lake County community was sentenced on March 17 to six years and six months in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson said. Keith Charles Baylor, 35, pleaded guilty...


Zeiler spared prison time for good behavior

POLSON — A St. Ignatius man’s pre-trial turnaround of behavior may have spared him prison time. Charles Henry “Pete” Zeiler, 45, was sentenced at District Court in Polson March 16 to the Lake County jail for six months, each of two counts of misdemeanor solicitation of violation of an...


Skov pleads guilty to assault Skov pleads guilty to assault

POLSON — A Polson man has admitted to assaulting a police officer. Kai Earl Skov, 50, entered a plea of guilty at District Court in Polson on March 9 to felony assault on a peace or judicial officer. According to charging documents, on Jan. 4, Lake County emergency dispatcher’s requested Polso...


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