Apr. 27 Montana News Briefs

Yellowstone County seeking information in woman’s death

BILLINGS (AP) — The Yellowstone County sheriff’s department is seeking the public’s help in determining what happened to a woman whose body was found in the Yellowstone River last Sunday.

Sheriff Mike Linder says 42-year-old Harriet Wilson sustained injuries before her body ended up in the river. He declined to describe the injuries. Linder has said Wilson’s death is being investigated as a homicide.

Wilson had been seen in downtown Billings in the days before her body was found and Linder says any other information about her whereabouts, activities or companions in the days and hours before she was discovered would be helpful.

Man gets 30 years for fatal shooting during botched robbery

BILLINGS (AP) — A man who shot another man to death during a botched robbery in southern Montana has been sentenced to 30 years in prison.

The Billings Gazette reports 38-yearold Ross Breshears was sentenced Thursday for the October 2015 death of 25-year-old Clinton Oldbull. Breshears struck a deal and pleaded guilty in January to deliberate homicide.

Prosecutors say he and 30-year-old Garrett Crandell went to Oldbull’s Billings home, where Oldbull was shot during a confrontation. Breshears says he planned to rob Oldbull, but Crandell was the one who pulled the trigger.

Crandell pleaded guilty to a robbery charge and was sentenced in December to 20 years in the Montana State Hospital, where he is being treated for schizophrenia.

Great Falls man sentenced for robbery, intimidation charges

GREAT FALLS (AP) — A Montana man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for robbery and intimidation charges that authorities say stemmed from threats he made to a 15-year-old boy.

The Great Falls Tribune reports 34-year-old Gregory Nyemaster was sentenced Tuesday after pleading guilty to the charges earlier this year.

Prosecutors dropped charges of kidnapping and burglary as part of a plea agreement.

According to court documents, Nyemaster threatened to kill the teen and took items from his Great Falls residence in January 2017, believing the boy was involved in the theft of items from his pickup truck.

According to the document, Nyemaster pointed a BB gun at the teen and went to a different house, claiming people inside had his stolen his items.

Montana man arrested on

suspicion of homicide

KALISPELL (AP) — A northwestern Montana man has been arrested on suspicion of deliberate homicide after a fatal shooting late Wednesday in Hungry Horse.

Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry says 47-year-old James William Quen of Martin City was arrested early Thursday in the death of 33-year-old Bradley Allen Winters.

Curry says there had been an altercation involving a number of people outside Winters’ home prior Winters being shot in the chest.

The Flathead Beacon reports Quen is jailed in Kalispell awaiting former charges. A jail staffer says a public defender met with Quen Thursday morning, but regional deputy public defender Nick Aemisegger was not immediately available for comment.

Curry says the investigation continues.

Montana Diocese reaches $20M

settlement with abuse victims

GREAT FALLS (AP) — The Roman Catholic Diocese of Great Falls/Billings has reached a $20 million agreement to settle claims by 86 people who said they were sexually abused as children by clergy employed by the diocese.

Two law firms representing the victims and the diocese announced Friday that the agreement was reached Tuesday during mediation.

The bankruptcy judge and the victims still must approve the settlement.

Last year, the diocese filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in order to negotiate a settlement. Last month, the diocese moved to dismiss its bankruptcy case, saying negotiations had reached an impasse and continuing legal costs were draining the resources it had to fund a settlement.

Bishop Michael Warfel said at the time that his obligation was to be fair to claimants while ensuring the parishes remain viable.