Justice

Justice delayed if judges denied?

BY: - March 27, 2021

No judge awaiting confirmation from the Montana Senate has ever failed to gain approval since 1973 when the Judicial Nominating Commission was created after the adoption of the Treasure State’s second Constitution. Every candidate selected has received approval, and then moved on to face the will of the voters at the ballot box every four […]

Gallatin County judge has his day in the Senate

BY: - March 26, 2021

Gallatin Deputy County Attorney Jordan Salo traveled to Helena to testify in favor of Judge Peter Ohman at the Senate Judiciary Confirmation hearing on Friday. One of her reasons for testifying? She lost a recent case in his court. It’s probably unconventional that the attorney who lost would come to support the judge. “I lost […]

Montanan charged in Capitol riot said he was there for ‘insurrection’

BY: - March 25, 2021

The fifth Montanan charged in the Jan. 6 riot at the United States Capitol is also a licensed real estate agent and developer of the Philipsburg Guest Ranch. Boyd Allen Camper of Montana has been charged with four crimes for his part in the Capitol riots, according to the complaint and arrest warrant filed in […]

Judges from Great Falls, Helena have hearings but face uncertain future

BY: - March 24, 2021

Two sitting Montana judges had their confirmation hearings in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday morning. Each one had more than a dozen supporters speak in favor of them, including attorneys who had, at times, been adversaries in the courtroom. Not one opponent spoke against either Judge Michele Reinhart Levine of Cascade County […]

Boulder suspect bought assault weapon six days before shooting

BY: - March 23, 2021

BOULDER, Colorado — The suspect charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder following Monday’s mass shooting at a Boulder King Soopers had purchased an assault-style weapon just six days earlier, police said in an arrest affidavit Tuesday. “Using law enforcement databases, investigators determined that (the suspect) had purchased a Ruger AR-556 pistol on March 16, 2021,” […]

Opponents: Ballot collection bill unconstitutional, costly

BY: - March 22, 2021

If you mess up when you drop off your friend’s ballot, you could be in hot water — and owe big money — if House Bill 406 becomes law. “If well-intentioned ballot deliverers make a mistake, they could be convicted of a criminal misdemeanor offense and incur a penalty of $500 for each wrongly delivered […]

Where’s recreational weed money going?

BY: - March 19, 2021

The long-awaited plan to implement the adult-use recreational marijuana program that voters approved in the last election has arrived at the Capitol and could land in a legislative committee as early as next week, setting the stage for one of this session’s key policy debates. At hand is a gargantuan 260-page bill from Rep. Mike […]

Group files suit against governor, state over judicial appointments

BY: and - March 17, 2021

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte signed Senate Bill 140 into law on Tuesday afternoon. The newly minted law eliminated the Judicial Nominating Commission and gave the state’s chief executive the power to appoint judges. On Wednesday morning, a group of plaintiffs filed a lawsuit with the Montana Supreme Court to stop the law, possibly setting a […]

New ‘Dreamers’ act runs into old obstacles

BY: - March 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — Legislation creating a path to citizenship for undocumented people brought to the U.S. as children faces a new border crisis and old partisan objections, diminishing the chances it will become law despite full Democratic control of Congress and the White House. On Thursday, the U.S. House is poised to pass the American Dream […]

Governor signs bill giving himself power to fill judicial vacancies

BY: - March 16, 2021

Gov. Greg Gianforte signed into a law Tuesday a bill that gives him mostly unfettered ability to fill supreme and district court vacancies. Senate Bill 140, sponsored by Sen. Keith Regier, R-Kalispell, eliminates the Judicial Nominating Commission and gives the governor power to fill judicial vacancies. However, the appointments have to be approved by the […]

Merrick Garland confirmed as the nation’s Attorney General

BY: - March 10, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Senate Wednesday confirmed Merrick Garland to serve as U.S. attorney general in a 70-30 vote. Last week, the Senate Judiciary Committee advanced his nomination in a 15-7 vote. Garland served as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. As attorney general, he’ll lead the Justice Department as the […]

Montana man charged in Capitol riot was brought back to country by Daines when COVID hit

BY: - March 8, 2021

A Dillon man arrested Saturday for his alleged role in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol was stuck in Morocco when the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States, and U.S. Sen. Steve Daines helped get him home then. Isaac Sturgeon, 32, was arrested at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York on […]