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Police blotter: Meth found in locked safe; wielding knife at trailer park; car stolen; assault on officer

Police blotter: Meth found in locked safe; wielding knife at trailer park; car stolen; assault on officer


Butte police report

Meth found in safe

Police officers assisted probation and parole staff in searching a residence in the 800 block of South Colorado Street at 4 p.m. Friday and found a safe in Erika Marie Patelis-McGrath’s bedroom containing various amounts (in separate baggies) of methamphetamine. Drug paraphernalia and a Beretta 9mm pistol, along with various IDs and credit cards were also found.

McGrath, 39, of Butte was arrested on two felonies — possession of dangerous drugs with intent to sell and probation violation, and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia. She was then transferred to the Butte Detention Center.

Wielding a knife

At about 8 p.m. Friday night, Keith Peace, 53, of Butte was reportedly walking in the area of the 200 block of Hobson Street, carrying a large hunting-style knife and approaching other trailers in the park.

The residents said Peace appeared to be having mental health issues. When police arrived at the scene, a woman told officers that she had given Peace a ride to the police station and that he still had the knife in his possession.

Officers immediately informed dispatch, but by that time Peace was already in the lobby throwing chairs, breaking a window, and appeared to be armed with a knife. He then left the lobby and tried to enter a police vehicle.

An off-duty officer had just pulled into the station, saw Peace attempt to enter the car. He recognized Peace from previous encounters and called out for him to stop.

According to police reports, Peace stepped toward the off-duty cop with the knife and the officer gave him further commands and Peace placed the knife on the ground.

Other officers arrived on the scene and arrested Peace, who according to witnesses and the off-duty cop, did not threaten them with the knife.

He was arrested on two felony counts of criminal mischief and probation violation, and taken into protective custody.

Assaulting police officer

Kenneth James Nichols, 40, of Butte was arrested for several offenses Saturday morning, including felony assault on a police officer and misdemeanor counts of criminal mischief, carrying a concealed firearm, resisting arrest and partner or family member assault.

A call came in around 9 a.m. about an assault that had just occurred in the 1900 block of South Jackson Street.  

According to the complainant, she had an argument with Nichols, her fiancé, and he had slammed her hand in the freezer. Nichols left the house with a gun and threatened to harm himself.

While the officer was speaking with the victim, Nichols returned to the residence, and a call was made for backup.

Officers responded, and according to reports, Nichols stepped from his truck and was very irate. Officers then tried to talk with Nichols, who became angrier, and then reached into his waistband and attempted to remove the pistol.

Officers grabbed Nichols and took him to the ground and placed him in custody. He was then transported to the Butte Detention Center.

Car, ring taken

At around 7 a.m. Friday police officers were at the parking garage on Galena Street on a report of a stolen 2008 Mercedes.

The Mercedes owner told police he parked and then locked his vehicle at 10 p.m. Thursday night and he had the keys. He stated that Aspen Marie Truzzolino, 38, of Butte had taken a set of keys a while back. He also said that he had some tools in the vehicle along with a ring. During the investigation, officers viewed the video from the garage and observed a female matching the description of Truzzolino enter the vehicle with a key at about 3 a.m., and leave the parking garage at around 4 a.m.

During an unrelated call at about noon Friday, officers observed the stolen vehicle pull into Gilligan’s parking lot. When they stopped the car, Truzzolino was a passenger inside and told officers she was purchasing the car.

The owner informed police that was not true. The ring was in Truzzolino’s possession, but the tools were not located. She was arrested on two felony counts — motor vehicle theft and theft from a motor vehicle and transported to the Butte Detention Center.

Felony assault

Late Friday night, officers responded to the 1200 block of East First Street regarding a disturbance between a male and a female.

According to the victim she was fighting with Johney Leonard Queer, 29, of Butte over keys when he hit her in the face and pushed her down.

Police deemed her injuries were consistent with her version of events.

Queer was arrested for felony partner or family member assault (third or subsequent offense) and transported to the Butte Detention Center.

Aggravated DUI

On Sunday night, Darla Lynn Jipp, 21, of Butte was involved in a single-vehicle accident in the 100 block of Bell Street. Two power poles had been hit, along with a trailer.

When officers arrived, Jipp was standing outside her vehicle and told police she was the driver of the vehicle. She appeared to be intoxicated and officers saw Twisted Tea cans in the vehicle.

Jipp was arrested for reckless driving and aggravated driving under the influence.

Vehicle break-in

Sometime between 10 p.m. Thursday night and 3 a.m. Friday morning, someone broke into a vehicle at the Hampton Inn, 3499 Harrison Ave., and took a wallet containing cash and credit cards, a pocket knife, sunglasses, prescription glasses and camping gear.

Stolen vehicles

  • In the early morning hours Friday, someone took a vehicle from Pacific Steel that was supposed to be crushed later in the day.
  • Around 7 a.m. Friday, an employee at S.J. Perry reported a trailer parked in the lot behind the business at 712 S. Arizona St., had been taken.
  • At around 6 p.m. Saturday, it was reported that a 2012 Chevy truck had been stolen from a business in the 4800 block of Hope Road. The truck was located by police Sunday in Billings.

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