The Missoula County Attorney’s office had their hands full this week with 18 new felony charges.

County Attorney Kirsten Pabst said the number of crimes has been increasing over the past several weeks.

“Six of those fall into the violent crimes, or crime against persons category,” Pabst began. “Three partner of family member assaults, one was a third offense that also involved an intimidation. A second stalking case, which makes it a felony, sexual abuse of children, in that there was an allegation that a suspect had child pornography on his phone, and there was a burglary that also involved an assault.”

There were criminal endangerment cases that the county prosecutors also dealt with last week.

“There was one felony DUI, one involving a high speed chase where the defendant allegedly fled, had been drinking and exceeded 100 miles per hour on Broadway,” she said. “There was another case where a woman drove off in her car with her spouse partially inside the car, dragging him. There were also a handful of methamphetamine cases, one was a meth related burglary, and there was another where a person was arrested for a previous meth related child endangerment case and when he was arrested, he had more meth on his person.”

Pabst said meth cases have become an epidemic, affecting all parts of the criminal justice system, from law enforcement to child welfare to the foster care system, with no end in sight.

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