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Eight charges dismissed in assault case

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A Polson man, who was facing eight counts of partner or family member assault plus one count of unlawful restraint, had all but one of the charges dismissed after the alleged victim recanted her story.

Pernnell Albert Dionne Jr., 35, entered a plea of guilty at District Court in Polson on Oct. 21 to one misdemeanor count of partner or family member assault.

Dionne was initially facing one count of felony strangulation of a partner or family member, five counts of felony partner or family member assault, two misdemeanor counts of partner or family member assault and unlawful restraint. 

Prosecutor Molly Owen, with the Lake County Attorney’s Office, amended the charges down to just one misdemeanor. Owen explained to the court that the alleged victim recanted her story during a recorded interview in a pre-trial deposition hearing, which left the prosecutor with no other choice but to reduce the charges.

Dionne admitted to the one count saying he and his girlfriend got into a physical altercation on April 25 and that she was injured.

Judge James Manley sentenced Dionne to one year in the Lake County jail with credit for 14 days already served.

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