Valley Journal
Valley Journal

Public Record

Coast guard impersonator gets deferred prosecution agreement

A 33-year-old Polson man charged with three counts of impersonating a public servant will have those charges dismissed as part of a deferred prosecution agreement. According to court records, Ryan William Lowden had a habit of donning a Coast Guard vest and pulling various boaters on Flathead Lake over for so called “saftey boat inspections.” Multiple parties reported being stopped by Lowden in both the summer of 2016 and 2017. The witnesses stated that Lowden would ride his personal watercraft out of nowhere and into the path of the boater forcing them to stop. The stops would usually occur south of the Armed Forces Memorial Bridge. The watercraft was equipped with flashing lig...


Prosecutors seek to convict Bigfork man who killed three grizzlies

In October 2017 the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Portland, Oregon vacated a Bigfork man’s conviction for killing three grizzly bears near Ferndale, however, prosecutors in Missoula are now trying again to convict him. Dan Wallen was convicted and sentenced in May 2015 for illegally taking ...


Lake County Justice Court news for May 2, 2018

Justice of the Peace Randal L. Owens dealt with the following cases from March 16-29: The following individuals were found guilty of speeding: Jason Wesley Beck , 46, fined $70; Yvette Quintana , 40, fined $70; Brandon Val Simmons , 31, fined $70; Dusty Shane Clark Von Riese , 37, fined $20; Michael ...


Bigfork man gets 3 years DOC for sexually assaulting 12-year-old

A Bigfork man was committed by Judge James Manley at District Court in Polson April 25 to 15 years with the State Department of Corrections with 12 years suspended after he pleaded guilty to sexual assault in February. Scott David Curry, 49, admitted to sexually assaulting a 12-year-old boy on multiple oc...


Croft gets 10-year prison sentence for child sexual assault

An 83-year-old Polson man was sentenced by Judge James Manley at District Court in Polson on April 25 to the Montana State Prison for 20 years with 10 years suspended after earlier admitting to sexually assaulting two young girls. Lewis Croft was initially charged with felony counts of sexual intercourse ...


Metzger sentenced for unsafe shooting practices Metzger sentenced for unsafe shooting practices

A Ronan man was committed to the state Department of Corrections for 10 years with all time suspended during an appearance at District Court in Polson on April 18.  Allen Ted Metzger, 60, entered a guilty plea on Feb. 28 through his attorney, Lance Jasper of Missoula, to two counts of criminal endang...


Detention Center demands to be reduced

Lake County has been chosen to participate in a pilot project aimed at reducing the demand on detention centers while ensuring criminal defendants make their court appearances. Lake County Chief Deputy Attorney James Lapotka says the 2017 Legislature established an evidence-based risk assessment program for ...


Littlelight pleads guilty to assault with weapon Littlelight pleads guilty to assault with weapon

Alta Collette Littlelight, 34, of Hardin, entered a plea of guilty at District Court in Polson on April 4 to assault with a weapon stemming from a pursuit last December that began in Missoula and ended in Lake County. Littlelight, also known as Alta Three Fingers, entered into a plea agreement with prosec...


Gaither enters plea agreement to resolve three cases Gaither enters plea agreement to resolve three cases

A 24-year-old Polson man entered into a plea agreement with Lake County prosecutors last week that resolves three separate cases against him. Nicholas Gaither entered an Alford plea to one count of endangering the welfare of a child. In an Alford plea a defendant concedes the case based on state’s evid...


Lake County Justice Court news for April 11, 2018

Justice of the Peace Randal L. Owens dealt with the following cases March 9-29: The following individuals were found guilty of speeding: Lisa Jo Hales , 46, fined $20; Robert F. Winter , 26, fined $20; Kaylee Lynn Weirather , 20, fined $70; Tropp William Vincent , 76, fined $70; Jason Wesley Beck , 4...


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