Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - On July 31, 2023, a Missoula Police Department officer was driving northbound on Burton Street when he saw a male ride a bike across West Broadway towards Downtown Lions Park. The male was shirtless and carrying a large blue backpack.  

The officer recognized the male as 56-year-old David Tufton. The officer knows Tufton to be a registered violent offender on felony probation out of Kalispell. He also knew that Tufton was not supposed to be in Missoula and was recently arrested for violating his probation by being in Missoula. 

The officer spoke to a Probation & Parole Officer on the phone. She told him that Tufton was released from jail on the condition that he report back to the Kalispell Probation & Parole Office by 9:00 a.m. It was apparent that Tufton did not follow the conditions of his release because the officer saw him after 1:00 p.m. in Missoula. The PO asked the officer to contact Tufton and detain him for probation. 

The officer contacted Tufton at Downtown Lions Park. Tufton put the bike and backpack on the ground. Throughout his interaction with Tufton, the officer maintained visual contact with the backpack and the bike ensuring nobody handled them. 

Tufton was detained for probation violations. The officer conducted a pat search of Tufton to ensure he did not have any weapons and the officer did not locate any. 

Tufton is also known by law enforcement to have been associated with illegal drugs. The PO asked the officer what property Tufton had with him. He told her that Tufton had a bike and a backpack. She asked the officer to search the property and the contents. 

During the search of the backpack, the officer found marijuana and a clear plastic bowl with a red lid. According to court documents, the officer said he could see several large crystalline rocks inside the bowl. The substance tested presumptive positive for methamphetamine. 

Tufton was placed under arrest and was transported to the Missoula County Detention Center. He is currently being charged with felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs. 

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

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