18 Year-Old Lolo Man Charged With Rape – Held on $2,000 Bond
18 year-old Justin Wieder was charged in Missoula Justice Court on Wednesday with felony sexual intercourse without consent. His bail was set at $2,000.
According to court documents, Wieder had a 15 year-old girlfriend with whom he had sex 'quite often'. The girl's father warned Wieder to stay away from his daughter. Wieder admitted to having sex with the girl, and that he was aware that she was only 15 years old.
Deputy Missoula County Attorney Selene Koepke asked Judge Karen Orzech for the unusually low bail amount of only $2,000, which Orzech said she did not initially agree with.
"Given the defendant is just 18, we're asking for some bail to be set, somewhere in the neighborhood of $2,000, given that this is a felony charge," Koepke said. "Given this, we're asking for pre-trial supervision whether he's released on his own recognizance or on bail. Judge, as you know, this is a sexual intercourse without consent case with a 15 year-old victim. The defendant did admit to having sex with the victim and he continued to have contact with the victim after her father told him not to, and there may be other charges being filed with a different victim."
The public defender, Joan Burbridge, argued that this particular case did not rise to the level of felony sexual intercourse without consent.
"Given that Mr. Wieder is only 18, this is a crime that encompasses many types or behavior," Burbridge said. "There is actually some discussion now that there should be two different statutes for this, and that Mr. Wieder doesn't pose a danger to society. or that he should remain in custody. He would agree to any conditions of release the court would impose."
Orzech asked Wieder if he was aware of the seriousness of the charge, to which he replied 'Yes, ma'am.' She then set bail at $2,000, and ordered Wieder or any member of his family not to have any contact with the victim or her family.
His next court appearance will be July 6.