Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - The Missoula County Attorney’s Office filed 20 new felony complaints this week, which is one less than last week and higher than the weekly average. According to County Attorney Matt Jennings, there were five violent crimes this week. 

“Four of those were family violence and they were all domestic violence against partners,” Jennings said. “This is obviously a focus in our office. We have a whole special victims unit team that focuses on domestic and sexual violence and we really try and target those because we know people are at risk when they're in an unhealthy relationship like that.” 

In addition, there was one endangerment crime, five property crimes, and nine drug crimes. 

“That is pretty high,” Jennings said. “We don’t usually charge that many. That doesn't mean that there aren't a lot of drug cases each week in our community. We find that a lot of the theft and even violent acts are based around drugs or alcohol, but this week, we had some really bizarre behaviors.” 

Jennings said there were a handful of people passed out in their vehicles in public.  

“Sadly, we had a nine-month pregnant woman that was passed out in her vehicle that we did charge with a drug case,” Jennings said. “We had some other people really engaging in bizarre and problematic behavior in public parks and other places.” 

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Jennings said their goal is to get people help with their addiction outside the criminal justice system. 

“We have a pretrial diversion program where people can actually get some help for their addiction and avoid a conviction overall because that's ultimately our goal,” Jennings said. “But if we are seeing that other criminal acts are being committed because of that drug use or other people are in danger, then those are the types of cases that we prioritize because unfortunately, sometimes the criminal justice system needs to be a chemical dependency provider of last resort. By charging people, we can make sure the kids are safe, that they are safe, and that they're not overdosing.” 

Jennings said they can get some treatment for them either through community programs, the Department of Corrections, or amazing medical interventions that are helping people with their addictions. 

The Missoula County Attorney’s Office provides a weekly crime report every Friday morning at 9:00 on Talk Back. You can listen to Jennings’ full report below: 

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