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Articles with the Tag: Courts

Lake County Justice of Peace candidates speak on qualifications

LAKE COUNTY — After eight years on the bench, Justice of the Peace Randy Owens has decided to leave the position at the end of his term. This leaves locals Michael Larson and Rick Schoening as the two candidates for the nonpartisan position. Each answered questions to help voters better understand thei...

Legislative Notes

Absentee ballots will soon be mailed out for November’s election. Two of the most important elections on the ballot are for Montana’s Supreme Court. We, as a group of Montana attorneys, former and current elected officials, and concerned citizens, are committed to supporting our Montana and Un...

Ruling permanently enjoins election laws, protecting Election Day Registration

News from Niki Zupanic, Upper Seven Law BILLINGS — The Thirteenth Judicial District Court ruled today that three voter suppression laws passed during the 2021 Montana Legislative Session violate the Montana Constitution and unreasonably restrict Montanans in exercising their right to vote.   ...

Malatare sentenced for aggravated assault Malatare sentenced for aggravated assault

POLSON — A Pablo man faced sentencing on Sept. 28 on charges stemming from what court documents describe as a brutal attack on a woman. Joseph Pierre Malatare Jr., 24, entered a plea of guilty at District Court in Polson on Aug. 10 to felony aggravated assault. According to court records, on April 2...

Valley Views

Judicial independence is a matter of Constitutional law and American tradition. By the strict design of our founders, our separate court system has been independent of party politics, and therefore not guided by party platforms and party leaders as are the other two branches of our government.   In 1...

MT Supreme Court affirms decision enjoining restrictive voting laws

News from Rylee Sommers-Flanagan, Upper Seven Law   HELENA — The Montana Supreme Court has upheld an earlier ruling prohibiting Montana Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen from enforcing several election-related bills enacted last year, including House Bill 176, which eliminated election day ...

Heavy Runner sentenced for endangerment

POLSON — A Pablo man, formerly of Browning, was committed at District Court in Polson on Sept. 1 to the Montana Department of Corrections for a total of 10 years with five years suspended. Curtis James Heavy Runner, 40, entered a plea of guilty during an earlier court appearance to felony charges of cr...

Ruling says 18-year-olds must be allowed to access their ballots

News from Rylee Sommers-Flanagan, Upper Seven Law BILLINGS — Judge Moses of the Thirteenth Judicial District Court held Wednesday that House Bill 506, which restricts ballot access for voters who turn 18 in the month before Election Day, violates the Montana Constitution. Youth plaintiff groups...

Lawsuit filed by Lake County against the state

LAKE COUNTY — This week a lawsuit was officially filed against the State of Montana by attorney Lance Jasper with the law firm Reep, Bell, and Jasper on behalf of Lake County for unfulfilled obligations of Public Law 280.  Public Law 280 was passed by legislation in 1963, whereby the State of M...

New Lake County attorney sworn in New Lake County attorney sworn in

POLSON — Molly Owen, Lake County’s new District Court judge, swore in new Lake County Attorney James Lapotka Thursday afternoon before a crowd of well-wishers. Lapotka ran unopposed for the post in the recent primary election, and replaces Steve Eschenbacher, who retired six months shy of the end...


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