Helena, Montana

Belgrade murder suspect accused of punching officer while in custody at detention center

BOZEMAN – Joseph Paul DeWise, facing charges for the January 2018 murder of his estranged wife Lauren DeWise, is accused of punching an officer at the Gallatin County Detention Center (GCDC) Saturday morning.

DeWise, currently an inmate at the GCDC, appeared in Justice Court on Monday, charged with assaulting a peace officer.

Court documents state around 10 a.m. on Saturday, the officer was distributing medication to inmates at the GCDC. DeWise reportedly became irritated because he was not woken up for the medication pass and became increasingly hostile with the officer.

DeWise allegedly stepped toward the officer, pushed him, and struck him below the officer’s right eye. The reporting officer said video of the incident shows DeWise pushing and punching the officer. According to court documents, five GCDC officers restrained DeWise and transported him to a higher-security area of the detention center.

Joseph Paul DeWise in Justice Court, July 29, 2019 (MTN photo)

The reporting officer said DeWise waived his rights and said he punched the officer because he felt threatened. He is quoted in court documents as saying “I felt threatened, it was just a reactionary thing, the guy came at me.”

DeWise’s bail was set at $150,000, to run concurrently with the $1 million bail that was set for the intentional homicide charge related to Lauren DeWise’s murder. A jury trial for that case is scheduled to begin in December.

Reporting by Cody Boyer for MTN News

MTN News

MTN News

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