DEER LODGE — A man pleaded not guilty in Deer Lodge district court this week to felony charges of criminal possession of dangerous drugs and three counts of assault with a weapon.
According to court records, in late September, police received a complaint that William Colter Lowery, 21, had threatened a 16-year-old boy with a knife. The boy was walking home when Lowery picked him up, and, instead of taking the boy home, drove to his garage and allegedly offered him a drug to smoke. The boy told officers that when he smoked the drug, his fingers tingled, he had trouble breathing, his body started shaking, and he felt numb all over. He became scared and again requested a ride home. Eventually Lowery drove him home but allegedly pulled up his shirt to display a knife and threatened him not to say anything about drugs given him, saying he “would never speak again.”
In December, a teenage girl told police that Lowery had pulled a gun on her friend, a 17-year-old male.
According to the record, in late November, Lowery and another individual were driving when Lowery allegedly became paranoid about people being “narcs” and accused the individual of telling on him. At that time, Lowery allegedly pulled a pistol out of the door pocket of the truck and threatened the individual. Lowery calmed down and a little while later, while driving around, they picked up a 17-year-old boy. Lowery allegedly became agitated again and pointed the pistol at the boy’s head asking, “Can I trust you?”
If found to be guilty, Lowery could be sentenced to from two years to life in prison on the drug charge and 20 years in prison for each of the assault charges in addition to a total of up to $200,000 in fines. He is in jail on $25,000 bond.
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In other court proceedings:
• Brian Alex Campbell, 27, of Deer Lodge pleaded not guilty to felony possession of dangerous drugs, methamphetamine, and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia. He is in jail on $10,000 bond but is seeking in-patient drug treatment at Rimrock. Judge Ray Dayton told Campbell he must return to jail if he leaves or completes the program.
• Sunshine Marie Cameron, 35, of Anaconda pleaded guilty to burglary. She admitted she unlawfully entered the residence of Deirdre Holland and took items on July 30, 2015. She could be sentenced to 20 years in prison and fined up to $50,000. Judge Dayton ordered a pre-sentence investigation, noting she was sentenced in Anaconda/Deer Lodge county on related charges.
• Michael Allen Murphy pleaded guilty to transfer of illegal article, chewing tobacco, while an inmate Montana State Prison. Murphy admitted he bought “chew” from an inmate who allegedly got it from a correctional officer, knowing it was an unlawful article at the prison. He was sentenced to 13 months with all but five months suspended, to be served consecutive to the sentence he is serving for criminal endangerment, and must pay $80 in court fees.