Augare: A Call from the Big Leagues

I’ve been following the circus surrounding Montana State Senator Shannon Augare so much that I can pronounce his last name correctly just about every time I see it. It’s a name recognition thing that most elected officials wouldn’t want because of the situation.

For those not acquainted with Sen. Augare’s circumstances, over Memorial Day weekend a Glacier County (Montana) Sheriff’s deputy pulled Augare’s vehicle over and contended he smelled alcohol. The traffic stop was on the Blackfeet reservation. Augare reportedly told the deputy that he did not have jurisdiction on the reservation to stop him. Augare reportedly left the scene as the deputy was trying to take his keys. The deputy did not give chase, but called Blackfeet Law Enforcement Services. By the way, Augare is a Blackfeet tribal councilman.

Apparently the Glacier County Sheriff’s office issued a news release about the traffic stop and that’s why we know all about this.

For Augare’s actions, he made the “Making Montana Proud” section of my weekly “Caught My Eye” column.

The Associated Press continued to ask questions of the Blackfeet tribal prosecutor and provide updates.

Recently we discovered that the FBI was investigating Augare and then it was disclosed that “Federal prosecutors on Friday charged state Sen. Shannon Augare with drunken driving, obstructing a peace officer and reckless driving.”

It seems that the U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana, Michael Cotter, decided to pull some of his best and brightest from prosecuting the very serious crime of growing marijuana to prosecute Augare. 

Just yesterday we found out that Augare got the call from the big leagues, “A magistrate judge has issued a court summons for a state senator and Blackfeet tribal leader accused of drunken driving and obstructing a peace officer. U.S. Magistrate Judge Keith Strong on Monday ordered Browning Democratic Sen. Shannon Augare to appear in court on July 17 in Great Falls.”

I don’t know if Augare is guilty of these charges or not; that will be decided in court. I would hope that a man in his position would not drive drunk, but elected officials these days are getting really good at letting us down. If the case goes to trial, it will be interesting to see how the prosecution makes their case.

I do know that it just got a lot more expensive for Augare.

Follow me on Twitter @TheWesternWord

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