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September 6, 2013 | By Matt Hamilton
A Montana judge's attempt to modify a 30-day prison sentence he gave a teacher convicted of raping a student was blocked Friday by the state's Supreme Court. Four of the six justices on Montana's highest court ruled that District Judge G. Todd Baugh could not move forward with a resentencing hearing scheduled for Friday in a bid to void the sentence imposed last week on Stacey Rambold. Rambold, 54, a Billings high school teacher, was convicted of raping a 14-year-old girl, who killed herself in 2010 while the case was pending.
September 4, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
Montana's top law-enforcement official has called a 30-day rape sentence handed down by a district judge last week "illegal" and filed an appeal Wednesday with the state supreme court. The notice, filed by the Montana attorney general, was a legal maneuver intended to preserve the state's legal right to appeal the sentence while prosecutors -- for procedural reasons -- ask District Judge G. Todd Baugh of Billings to call off a Friday hearing the judge had called to readdress the sentence.
September 3, 2013 | By Nardine Saad
Kate Bosworth tied the knot last week wearing two Oscar de la Renta gowns.  The "Straw Dogs" actress, 30, married director Michael Polish, 42,  in an intimate ranch ceremony in Philipsburg, Mont., on Aug. 31, according to Martha Stewart Weddings, which helped organize the big day by mixing Victorian touches and romantic Western influences. Bosworth and Polish met when he directed her in the drama "Big Sur" in 2011, according to People, and the pair said it was love at first sight.
August 29, 2013 | By Christine Mai-Duc
With a teenage rape victim dead and her rapist due to spend just 30 days behind bars, angry activists planned to protest a Montana judge's dismissive comments about the case Thursday. Earlier this week, State District Judge G. Todd Baugh, 71, sentenced former high school teacher Stacey Dean Rambold to 15 years in prison, with all but 31 days suspended. Rambold, 54, received credit for one day served, leaving 30 days due. Prosecutors had asked for 20 years, with 10 years suspended.
August 29, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in Billings, Mont., on Thursday to protest a local judge's light sentence for a rapist whose teenage victim killed herself. State District Judge G. Todd Baugh, 71, gained national notoriety this week after sentencing former high school teacher Stacey Dean Rambold, 54, to a month in prison for raping a 14-year-old student. The rest of Rambold's 15-year sentence was suspended, which means he would serve his term outside of prison. The crowd gathered Thursday to call for Baugh's resignation as well as a review of the sentence after his comments that the teen was “older than her chronological age” and “as much in control of the situation” as her teacher was. "We need to remove the judge from office, we need justice, and we need to move forward," said Marian Bradley, state president of the Montana National Organization for Women, in an interview with the Los Angeles Times.
August 28, 2013 | By Christine Mai-Duc
A Montana judge has come under fire after handing down a 30-day sentence to a former high school teacher convicted of raping a 14-year-old student and for making statements in court that the victim was "older than her chronological age" and "as much in control of the situation" as her teacher. Outrage is particularly sharp in Billings, where the crime took place, because the girl committed suicide in 2010, just shy of her 17th birthday, as the criminal case was pending. A protest was planned for Thursday, and organizers have called on Montana District Judge G. Todd Baugh to resign.
August 12, 2013 | Times Staff and Wire Reports
Stan Lynde, creator of the syndicated western comic strip "Rick O'Shay," which ran for 20 years in major newspapers and reached about 15 million readers, died Tuesday of cancer in Helena, Mont. He was 81. Lynde was a Korean War veteran who had studied journalism at the University of Montana and briefly worked on his family's ranch in Colorado when he realized he wanted to try to make it as a cartoonist. After buying a one-way ticket to New York City in the 1950s, he worked his way up to commodities reporter at the Wall Street Journal while attending the School of Visual Arts at night.
July 13, 2013 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON -- Former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer won't seek Montana's open U.S. Senate seat in 2014, a blow to Democrats' hopes of holding the seat and preserving their overall Senate majority. The popular Democrat, who left the governor's office in 2013 after two terms, told the Associated Press that he “kicked the tires” on the race but decided he preferred Montana to Washington. “There are all kinds of people that think I should be in the U.S. Senate. But I never wanted to be in the U.S. Senate,” he said.
June 25, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
They don't care if it rains or freezes, they can keep their ski-mountain Jesus. A federal judge ruled Tuesday that a 6-decade-old, 6-foot-tall Jesus statue could stay on a small patch of federal land in the Flathead National Forest in Montana after an atheist and agnostic group argued that the statue violated the 1st Amendment separation of church and state. The Jesus statue sits on a 25-by-25-foot parcel of federal land along a ski run in the Whitefish Mountain Resort. In 1953, the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic group, won permission from the U.S. Forest Service to erect the statue.
June 12, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
It's not enough to offer tax rebates and credits to lure filmmakers. Now Montana has joined a handful of states offering outright cash to get Hollywood's attention. In addition to breathtaking mountain scenery and pristine wilderness, Montana is touting its Big Sky Film Grant, which provides up to $1 million in cash per fiscal year to Montana-based film and TV productions. The program, which launched earlier this year, targets feature-length films and television series that shoot at least 50% of principal photography in Montana.
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