Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - On February 28, 2023, at approximately 2:15 p.m., Missoula Police Department officers were dispatched to the Poverello Center for a report of a physical disturbance.

A Missoula Police Officer arrived on the scene and spoke with the alleged victim who described the male suspect involved in the disturbance as wearing a black jacket, black pants, and a black hat. The officer later heard another officer advise that they were with a male that met the description of the suspect.

The officer responded to that location and observed a male dressed in all black and wearing a black hat. The male identified himself as 47-year-old Tatonkaska Howard. Howard was also with another female. After running Howard’s name through dispatch, officers learned that he had three appearance warrants and one arrestable warrant.  

The officer arrested Howard and advised him that he was going to be transported to Municipal Court to be seen on his appearance warrants first, and then he would be taken to the Missoula County Detention Facility on the arrestable warrant. As the officer cuffed Howard and walked him over to his patrol vehicle, the female was observed getting close to Howard several times. 

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As the officer began a search incident to arrest, Howard asked if the female could have his jacket. The officer told Howard that it was fine but only after the search was complete. Court documents indicate the officer then heard Howard let out a defeated, "ok." While searching Howard, the officer discovered several hypodermic needles, a butane torch, two small clear baggies with crystal-like rocks inside, and eight credit cards. 

When the officer discovered the clear baggies, Howard stated, "I think I know what it is, sir." The officer asked Howard what his best-educated guess was, to which Howard stated, "probably drugs”. Howard then claimed to have found the drugs, drug paraphernalia, credit cards, and several packaged marijuana joints in the trash behind a carwash on East Broadway. Howard was subsequently transported to the Missoula County Detention Facility. 

The officer then responded to the Missoula Police Department and tested the crystal-like rock using a department TruNarc system which returned a presumptive positive indication of methamphetamine in both clear baggies. 

Howard is currently being charged with felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs, criminal possession of drug paraphernalia, and theft of lost or mislaid property.

The information in this article was obtained from sources that are publicly viewable. 

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