Crime in Miles City
Posted by BLT (+88) 3 years ago
I was just wondering, we never read in the paper of any crime occuring in Custer County. Does much happen here? My son recently had his car broken into while it was parked. When I read the local paper rarely do I ever see the things that are written of elsewhere.
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Posted by MCPD (+78) 3 years ago
BLT-

Yes, Custer County and Miles City experience crime. In August of this year alone, we handled an unprecedented amount of felony investigations. The Police Department has recognized that the community is highly interested in the issues that the Police Department handles. We also recognize that the media exposure is something that can be improved upon. We are utilizing our Facebook page in an attempt to fill the gaps in between the incidents that do make it into the local paper. Feel free to check our page out. You may find it able to answer many of your questions. And of course, if you have further questions, feel free to contact the Police Department any time.

Stay Safe-
Denise
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Posted by BLT (+88) 3 years ago
It is curious why our local paper that runs five days a week covers no crime events. I wonder why this is?
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+9286) 3 years ago
We depend on the police sending us reports. We no longer have the staff to go to the police and sheriff departments everyday. There are also legal issues that didn't used to exist that make reporting rather vague. No exact addresses, that sort of thing. Notice how fire calls say "1000 block Palmer" rather than the precise location, even if we generally know where it is.
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Posted by Frank Hardy (+1413) 3 years ago


This is the way we used to do it.....back in the days when we had tek-noll-o-gee.

FH
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+9286) 3 years ago
Actually, we used to have a person who went to the various departments but we don't have spare personnel and they don't have spare personnel to handle this. Technology isn't the issue. Manpower cuts are.
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Posted by Tim Wagoner (+721) 3 years ago
So if you had someone that would go and get the information to you, the paper would report it?

How difficult would it be to obtain if a volunteer stepped up?

How about a report on the activities of the local animal control?
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Posted by Tom Masa (+1647) 3 years ago
How about a call to the police. Surely someone has ten minutes to make a call. Or how about the PD emailing or faxing daily information to the Star.
Also it would be interesting to have court citations in the paper. Most papers have that. That way you can find out which of your neighbors are speeding and running red lights and stop signs. LOL
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Posted by boxdmc (+97) 3 years ago
I've been trying to figure out the Miles City Star since I moved here 18 yrs ago. It seems they have always been reluctant to publish info on crimes. I've heard they refrain from using names because the accused is innocent until proven guilty.This doesn't apply when the accused is the mayor or when a not well known young man hits a child on Comstock. It seems they don't want it to get out that there are problems in this city. This is contrary to selling newspapers. The more outrageous the crime or the bigger the name the more they sell. Not so here. Big name families in this town don't get their name in the paper for bad things. I understand there is no staff to adequately investigate leads and so on but I also understand the paper is getting thinner and the content thinner as well. I've been a faithful subscriber but every time the renewal comes I contemplate not continuing. I'm glad that the MCPD has at least tried to fill in the gaps.
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Posted by Kelly (+2564) 3 years ago
The Miles City Star is an anachronism.
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Posted by Steve Allison (+977) 3 years ago
Something people looking for gossip forget that this is a time of highest personal rights. Many many law suits have been litigated by people mentioned in these reports because they feel info not adjudicated should not be public. After all the law is innocent until proven guilty. Maybe we need to keep our noises out of our neighbors business.
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Posted by SeptyTwo (+609) 3 years ago
But it can be a fun thing to have, right?







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Posted by Oddjob (+131) 3 years ago
A lot of things seem to have changed in MC since the days I had to beat my Dad to the paper to "alter" the traffic ticket reports. He always found out anyway and delivered his standard form of correctional therapy.

"Initial offense reports" and "initial arrest records" are public records in Montana. All you have to do is ask. The Billings Gazette didn't have a problem rushing to press with what amounted to police scanner chatter and Red Lodge street gossip when Jason Priest was pinched for domestic abuse. The Denny Rehberg drunken boat crack-up was headlines for months in all Montana newspapers.

Not too surprisingly, it took the New York Times to recognize that John Walsh found it easier to "borrow" the work of others rather than write his own thesis. Or Fox News to reveal Brian Schweitzer's ties to "dark money". Guess it just depends on what the Montana editors consider to be "in the public interest".

Down here, the front page is the "stabbing/shooting/beating/drug bust of the day" and the "murder of the week". They publish police arrest reports, jail records, court records, title transfers, marriage license applications, divorces granted and which restaurants fail health inspections. Apparently nobody has told these folks that this is "a time of highest personal rights".
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Posted by David Schott (+12366) 3 years ago
The Star used to publish a (monthly?) police report with a rundown of some of the calls the police responded to. The report may have been submitted by the police department.

The Star didn't hesitate to report on a local councilperson who was involved in an altercation outside of a Main Street bar not too long ago.
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Posted by Steve Allison (+977) 3 years ago
And many many complaints and threats were as a result.
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Posted by Wendy Wilson (+6152) 3 years ago
So what? The threat of litigation should not prevent journalists from reporting on local crime. The word "allegedly" works wonders to negate libel suits.
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Posted by Kacey (+3140) 3 years ago
"We are utilizing our Facebook page in an attempt to fill the gaps in between the incidents that do make it into the local paper. Feel free to check our page out. You may find it able to answer many of your questions."

There is nothing on the page that is posted by the MCPD.
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+13722) 3 years ago
I find it ironic that the people complaining about this the loudest are also those most likely to have a police scanner, so they can be in on the town scuttlebutt.
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Posted by Steve Allison (+977) 3 years ago
Alleged does not work wonders in a civil suit they are determined more on the emotions of the jury members then on the letter of the law. Alleged can stop or effect legal actions by officers the court and other enforcement agencies but a civil suit call be filed by anyone mad enough to pay a lawyer to file the action. We have all heard stories of big money going to stupid suits. Even if you win and no money is given the plaintiff, you still have had to pay big bucks to your lawyer to defend you. A no win situation for the news paper.
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Posted by Oddjob (+131) 3 years ago
If you are so afraid of lawsuits, then don't call the Star a "newspaper" because obviously, it is not. It's a Thrifty Nickle you have to pay for. That is probably reflected by a sinking number of readers. Who wants to pay for 25, 50 and 75 year-old news and recipes? I don't know what The Star is afraid of. If Ship or the Mayor never sued, then most likely, nobody will.

When I first got here the newspaper was privately owned. The owner/editor was a true journalist who published a weekly column called "Barbwire". In his column, he absolutely ravaged the local government officials, Sheriff, Cops, NHP, School Board, "City Fathers", etc. for all the illegal crap that they pull (and still do). The people could hardly wait for the next edition.

He blew the whistle on executive session violations, open meeting violations, the "roundtable" coffee sessions and dinners at out of town restaurants where the Commissioners or City Council violated quorum to discuss secret business, sweetheart land deals for politicians and donors, changing permit regs for pals to keep business competition from coming in, cops drunken Christmas parties and brawls..you name it. I don't remember him ever getting sued, because he was reporting what was happening. None of these guys wanted their antics moved from "Barbwire" to the front page. The man had the people actually watching what these guys were up to and a lot of them were removed.

Then Lee Newspapers bought the paper and turned it into a Lee "newspaper". The real news didn't go away. Reporting the real news went away.

Subscriptions tanked, so now they have turned it into the "Police Gazette" to try and get the subscribers back. I guess that people behind bars are easy to find and much less likely to sue you. Unfortunately now, the only time we find out which officials have been screwing us for years, is after they have resigned and fled to parts unknown.

But I still subscribe because I enjoy it when they are embarrassed by being scooped, and I'm too lazy to round up the grocery ads on my own.
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Posted by Steve Allison (+977) 3 years ago
[This message has been edited by Steve Allison (11/10/2014)]
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Posted by Jeri Dalbec (+2504) 3 years ago
I wouldn't have a clue about what is going on in this town without the Miles City Star. Some great people doing a very good job. Kudos to them??
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+11719) 3 years ago
I have to agree with Oddjob regarding Lee Newspapers. They are just terrible.
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Posted by Lorin Dixson (+593) 3 years ago
Gunnar says I have to agree with Oddjob Oh No!!!! a polar shift?
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+13722) 3 years ago
I am throwing the BS flag here on Oddjob. The STAR is owned by Yellowstone Newspapers, not Lee Enterprises. I think the owner lives in Livingston.
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Posted by Bridgier (+8054) 3 years ago
I think oddy's referring to whichever pro-extraction rag is published in the sun-blasted nevadan hellscape he calls home.

Or something like that.
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+11719) 3 years ago
Ummmm....Richard, I believe Oddjob was discussing the newspaper in his current residence (somewhere in Nevada, judging from the NV next to his name), not the Star.

Dang...first I agree with Oddjob, now I am defending him.
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Posted by David Schott (+12366) 3 years ago
Lee Newspapers owns the Elko Daily Free Press in Nevada.
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Posted by Oddjob (+131) 3 years ago
I'm throwing the red flag on your BS flag. I was referring to a Nevada newspaper being owned (ruined) by Lee Enterprises, not the Star.

Didn't Lee ruin some other Montana newspapers back 25 or 30 years ago? The Gazette and/or Missoulian?

Yes, they do, Dave, and it's fish wrap.

"sun-blasted nevadan hellscape"

My view is the magnificent alpine terrain of the snow-capped Ruby Mountains. Plus the fact that it will be "sun-blasted" and 40 degrees warmer here today than in MC. I'll will also have a wonderful day, not having to wait for every Ada County moran to stop before they can turn right.

[This message has been edited by Oddjob (11/11/2014)]

[This message has been edited by Oddjob (11/11/2014)]
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Posted by David Schott (+12366) 3 years ago


"The Ruby Mountains from the one-horse town of Elko, Nevada."
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Posted by Doug Colombik (+51) 3 years ago
From January 1st, 2014 to October 31st, 2014 officers have been super busy. Here are some numbers for that time period:

89 DUI Arrests
297 Moving citations
403 Non-moving citations
1170 Warnings
5377 Calls for service
831 Misdemeanor arrests
142 Juvenile misdemeanors
800 Persons interviewed
1654 Criminal investigations
7741 Gallons of fuel
1905 Traffic stops
81 Felony investigations

There is never a slow day for our officers anymore. Times have changed.

496 911 Hang up calls
87 Hit and Run Accidents
323 Motor vehicle accidents
216 Alarm calls
416 Animal complaints
16 Assault in progress
11 Assault with injury
26 Burglaries
8 Child Abuse investigations
137 Criminal Mischief
221 Disorderly Conduct
288 Dog at large complaints
60 Barking dog complaints
16 Dog bites
103 Domestic disturbances
62 Drug complaints
36 Fireworks complaints
2 Forgery reports
15 Fraud reports
11 Person with a gun
6 Identity theft
91 Reports of intoxicated drivers
38 MIP Alcohol or tobacco
30 Missing person reports
11 Open container complaints
25 Protective order violations
121 Parking violations
54 Privacy in communication complaints
1 Prostitution investigation
2 Prowler complaints
189 Public nuisance complaints
2 Robbery
19 Sexual assault investigations
7 Shoplifting
19 Stalking complaints
41 Suicidal subjects
149 Suspicious circumstances
189 Suspicious person/vehicles
408 Theft complaints
50 Threatening complaints
84 Trespassing complaints
23 Vicious dog complaints
54 Warrants served
358 Welfare checks
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Posted by Rob Shipley (+352) 9 months ago
My opinion of Chief Columbik's lengthy listing here is astounding. Thank you, Sir, for your professionalism.

"Ship"
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