Missoula Crime Report: Violence was the Theme Last Week
Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - It was a relatively light week for crime numbers in Missoula County, according to Deputy County Attorney Mac Bloom who provided the weekly report for County Attorney Kirsten Pabst on Friday’s Talk Back show on KGVO.
Fewer Crimes Reported this Week in Missoula County
Bloom said in previous weeks the total number of crimes for the week had been as high as the upper 20s, but this week was thankfully not so active.
“Actually it was a pretty quiet week for us this week,” began Bloom. “We ended up charging 16 cases, which is down quite a bit from the 22 that we charged last week. We had 11 violent crimes against persons. We had three endangerment crimes which are like the DUIs and where people's lives are put at risk. We had one property crime and one administrative crime, and actually, we had no drug crimes this week.”
There were Still Several Crimes Involving Strangulation and Sexual Assault
Bloom provided specific details of the crimes reported this week.
“When you look at those violent crimes that we had against persons and break those down even further, three of them were partner or family member violence or strangulation cases; seven of them were non-family violence, and one of them was a sexual assault incest type case, so that was the summary for the week. It really wasn't too bad compared to other weeks we've had.”
Recently, the Missoula County Attorney’s Office won a conviction in the deliberate homicide trial of Staryal Johnson, and Bloom walked the Talk Back audience through the process of sentencing in such a crime.
The Sentencing Phase Continues for a Local Murder Case
“After a conviction, the court orders what's called a pre-sentence investigation report,” he said. “The Department of Corrections sits down and they do a report over the defendant’s life. They cover things like education, employment, family history, his criminal history, and pretty much put together a compendium of everything that this person has done and what can be expected from this person going forward.”
Bloom said the sentencing phase for Johnson is still in progress.
“That process usually takes at least four weeks, but in a bigger case it can take six to eight weeks,” he said. “It just really depends on how much information there is to gather. The court will then set a sentencing date and the parties will proceed at that point and have a chance to argue with they believe is appropriate.”
For Johnson, who was convicted of deliberate homicide and sexual abuse of a minor, Bloom said his office has asked for a life sentence without the possibility of parole.