Just after 8:00 a.m. on Friday, Missoula Police Officers were contacted by a man in regards to a robbery that had just occurred. The complainant stated that he had a gun put to his head and was pistol whipped.

The complainant said he had been in contact with a juvenile female who he had known for about a week. He said the juvenile was going to come over to smoke and help him clean the RV he lives in. The juvenile came to his RV, which was parked in the 1500 block of Liberty Lane, and entered. A short time later, two males also entered his RV. Police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh explains.

“The officers made contact with the victim who stated that he had contact with individuals who pointed a handgun at him and subsequently pistol whipped him, causing minor injury, before taking his wallet, cellphone, and personal items,” Welsh said. “He said the suspects left in a silver passenger car.”

The males were identified as 25-year-old Rio Beierle and 23-year-old Taylor Mienke. While in the RV, Beierle put the barrel of a pistol to the victim’s head, then hit him with the gun, causing pain and injury to the victim’s right cheek.

While officers were interviewing the victim, other officers located the juvenile, Beierle, and Mienke. It was learned that a fourth individual, 27-year-old Kandance Miller, was also involved.

“The victim was able to identify two of the individuals and they were subsequently connected to two other suspects who were located in the 2000 block of North Avenue a short time later,” Welsh said. “All four individuals are in custody. All were transported to the Missoula County Detention Center.”

Beierle admitted to bringing a BB gun that looks like a black, semi-automatic pistol into the RV. He admitted to brandishing it at the victim, but denied pistol whipping him, saying he punched him instead.

Beierle denied taking anything from the RV himself, but stated he knew Mienke had taken items including a red cooler with pills and heroin inside that was currently in the trunk of Beierle’s vehicle. The black firearm and the cooler with heroin inside were located in the vehicle.

Mienke stated that he, the juvenile, Beierle, and Miller all discussed committing the robbery while at Miller’s house. He stated the plan was to take whatever they could get, to include drugs, heroin, fentanyl and anything else. Mienke grabbed a laptop, the red cooler, and the victim’s wallet.

Miller ultimately admitted that she helped to engineer the robbery but insisted she didn’t know Beierle was going to use a gun. She stated she drove everyone there and away after the robbery was complete. An MPD Detective located several text messages between Miller and the juvenile planning the robbery and discussing the events in the RV, including the use of a gun.

Beierle, Mienke, and Miller were all charged with felony conspiracy to commit robbery. Beierle was also charged with felony assault with a weapon and felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs.

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