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Troy man accused of assault with weapon

by SCOTT SHINDLEDECKER
The Western News | June 10, 2022 7:00 AM

A Troy man is accused of pointing a loaded gun at two people at a local business last month.

Ronald Craig Bechtold, 70, pleaded not guilty to two felony counts of assault with a weapon Monday in the Montana 19th Judicial District Court. He is free after posting a $25,000 bond on May 24.

According to court documents, a man came to the Troy Police Department on May 15 and told Sgt. Henry Roy that a man, later identified as Bechtold, had pointed a gun at he and his wife while they were parked outside of the Trojan Lanes in Troy.

The alleged victim said Bechtold was walking around his truck before he pulled out a loaded .40 caliber Glock and pointed it at them.

Sgt. Roy called for backup due to a law enforcement caution in which Bechtold allegedly made statements he would “shoot it out” with officers. When the officers arrived, they saw Bechtold standing in front of his truck.

Sgt. Roy told Bechtold to step away from the truck several times before he did. After Bechtold was handcuffed, he told the officer the gun was on the front seat of the truck, according to court documents.

Bechtold denied the allegations and said he used the gun to scratch his shoulder as he got into his truck. Sgt. Roy was concerned because he knew Bechtold was going through a divorce. According to court records, Bechtold’s wife of nearly 30 years had filed for divorce on May 22.

Bechtold’s next court hearing is scheduled for Oct. 17.

The maximum sentence for assault with a weapon is 20 years in the Montana State Prison.