Tim Leeds Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
Kelly James Engelhardt of Havre, 27, pleaded not guilty Thursday in federal court in Great Falls to a charge of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute marijuana, a press release from the U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana said. Dates for a pre-trial conference and a trial have not been set. Engelhardt is currently detained, the press release said. If convicted of the charge, he faces a mandatory five years in prison and could be sentenced to the maximum of 40 years, a $2 million fine and four years of supervised release. Engelhardt’s parents have been charged with criminal possession of dangerous drugs, misdemeanors, resulting from the search that led to his being charged, Tri-Agency Safe Trails Task Force Supervisor Jerry Nystrom said today. Both have pleaded not guilty, and Mary Engelhardt is scheduled for trial on April 22 and Steve Engelhardt is scheduled for trial on May 6, a representative of the Hill County Justice Court said this morning. Kelly James Engelhardt, who was severely injured in a fall from cliffs at Fresno Reservoir on Aug. 5 when a zipline he was sliding down broke, was charged in relation to a search of his residence in Saddle Butte Estates on July 26. Engelhardt lost his left leg below the knee to amputation from injuries sustained in the fall and also sustained multiple broken bones in his right leg, broken bones in his hips, broken vertebrae And a partially bitten-through tongue. Law enforcement agents seized 145 items in the raid, including 18 1/2 pounds of marijuana, $7,000 in cash and 12 firearms. The raid was conducted by the Tri-Agency Safe Trails Task force in conjunction with the Havre Police Department, the Hill County Sheriff’s Office, the Great Falls office of the state Department of Criminal Investigations, the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the U.S. Border Patrol which provided assistance including sending a helicopter to use during the raid. Nystrom said that in the operation on July 26, two residences and an outbuilding were searched and evidence was seized from each building. The cash seized could be subject to forfeiture, and the 12 firearms are still being investigated by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to determine if they might be subject to forfeiture, he said.