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Trial for Plentywood man accused of rapes moved to April

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An April 11 jury trial has been set for a Plentywood man accused of three counts of sexual intercourse without consent against two developmentally disabled women.

And the net for the jury pool was widened from 60-70 candidates in Sheridan County to 150, given defendant Timothy Marsh’s longtime presence in the community. Attorneys asked the number be "bumped up" in order to find jurors. There was no discussion of a change of venue for the trial during Thursday's discussion.

Judge Brenda R. Gilbert of the 6th Judicial District Court out of Livingston is presiding over the Sheridan County trial after the previous judge was asked to recuse himself, when prosecuting attorney cited his possible familiarity with the defendant.

During the Oct. 28 omnibus hearing, state Assistant Attorney General Mike Gee of the Montana Department of Justice, which is prosecuting the case, said the investigation into Marsh is continuing and would provide any new discovery to Marsh’s attorney as that unfolds.

He said there would possibly be more subpoenas issued soon.

“I think there will be more motions,” he said.

Marsh’s attorney, Samantha Howard, said her client did not plan to waive his right to a speedy trial.

The alleged incidents occurred in 2015 and in 2018, according to court documents filed Aug. 16. Marsh at one time worked as a maintenance worker at Glenwood Inc., a facility for adults with disabilities. He is no longer employed there.

Each count is a felony. The first count can bring imprisonment of two to no more than 100 years, a maximum fine of $50,000 or both.

Marsh pleaded not guilty Aug. 25 and is out of jail on $150,000 bond.

Gee filed the request for the new judge on Aug. 30. Gee said no one was asserting that the previous judge, David Cybulski of the 15th Judicial District Court in Sheridan County, could not be fair or impartial, but said there was a specter of a conflict. Gilbert’s courtroom is based in in Livingston.

The trial is expected to take five days. At one time, the trial was scheduled for February.

Assistant editor Phil Drake can be reached at 406-231-9021.

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