GREAT FALLS (AP) - A Malmstrom Air Force base airman choked his fiancee to death at a motel then tried at least five times to kill himself before being arrested in Meagher County, court records said.
John D. Trotter, 19, was being held at the Cascade County regional jail on murder charges in the weekend death of Jill LaRocque, 22, a military member stationed at Malmstrom.
Great Falls police found her body at a motel Monday afternoon, after Trotter was arrested on a Forest Service Road in Meagher County.
''It appeared she had been choked to death,'' the affidavit said.
Sgt. Bob Rosipal, a Cascade County coroner, would not release the time or official cause of death.
Court records said Trotter and LaRocque checked into a hotel Saturday afternoon. Trotter said he began drinking and passed out sometime before noon on Sunday. LaRocque left to have lunch with a friend.
When she returned she told him there was ''no way she was going to marry an alcoholic,'' court records said. Trotter said he ''snapped'' and choked Larocque for six to eight minutes until she fell off the bed, then choked her some more.
He left the room to smoke a cigarette, returned to find that she was dead and staged a scene to make it look like she had died during rough sex.
Trotter then went shopping, buying a knife, then bleach and ammonia. He stopped at his base dormitory room early Monday, where law enforcement officers found pools of blood and a knife. They believe he attempted suicide there.
Court records said Trotter tried to drink the bleach and ammonia, but couldn't, then tried to hang himself with a belt and a power cord. He then slept at another motel until Monday morning, when he again tried to kill himself by drinking antifreeze and window washer, but couldn't.
Trotter took LaRocque's car down U.S. Highway 89 late Monday, looking for a cliff to drive off, he told authorities.
He drove up a Forest Service road, then turned around and tried to pull in front of a motorhome traveling on Highway 89. The driver of the motorhome swerved to avoid T-boning the car, Meagher County authorities said.
Court records said Trotter confessed to choking LaRocque while being questioned by a Montana Highway Patrol officer.
Trotter was an Airman First Class who entered active duty Nov. 29, 2004. He arrived at Malmstrom in May 2005 and served as a military policeman with the 341st Security Forces Squadron.