46 year-old Terrence Roberts was sentenced by District Judge Leslie Halligan on Thursday afternoon to 15 years in the Montana State Prison for the attempted kidnapping of a then-16 year-old Missoula girl, as well as for obstructing a peace officer.

Deputy Missoula County Attorney Mac Bloom addressed the court.

“On July 20 2020, Terrance Roberts attempted to kidnap a16 year-old girl by Brennan’s Wave,” began Bloom. “He used force and intimidation to commit this crime when he grabbed her forcibly by the arm and said ‘come with me’. He instilled a deep sense of fear within the victim and the jury issued a unanimous verdict of guilty to the offense of attempted kidnapping and obstructing a peace officer.”

Bloom asked Judge Halligan to impose the maximum sentence on Roberts.

“The defendant has had many opportunities to make positive changes in his life and has not done so,” he said. “At some point, he needs to be held accountable for his persistent criminal behavior regardless of the reasons behind it. The state believes that it's recommended since 15 years at the Montana State Prison is fair, and even could be considered lenient in light of his extensive criminal history. Incarceration is necessary to protect the community from future harm and to hold him accountable for what he did to the victim.”

After hearing from the victim, who is now 17 years old and has been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Judge Halligan called the girl’s father to the stand.

“I got to my daughter before the police arrived on scene,” said her father, Tom. I hugged my daughter, and once I knew she was safe I immediately asked which way he went, that is when the 9-1-1 dispatcher told me that he was in custody. All I can say is, Terrence, you're lucky that the police got to you before I did. The majority of the public is sick and tired of these career criminals, committing crimes, and then getting a slap on the wrist only to commit more crimes and affect new victims over and over and over again.”

judge halligan

Judge Halligan spoke to Roberts for an extended period of time and listened to him recount his life history, his Native American religious beliefs and his struggles with alcohol and drugs.

Following Roberts’ statements, Judge Halligan pronounced sentence.

“It's my judgment that with regard to the kidnapping charge, Mr. Roberts, I am going to impose the state's recommendation of a 15 year sentence to the Montana State Prison,” said Judge Halligan. “I am not going to impose a probation or parole restriction that was requested. It's my understanding that depending on your behavior and actions at the prison that you will at some point be eligible for parole.”

It is KGVO’s policy that even though the 17 year-old victim was identified in court, that her name will not be released here, because she is a juvenile.


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