By McKenzie Graye, I-O Reporter
On Friday, Sept. 4, Blackfeet Law Enforcement officers observed a car driving recklessly and made contact. When they ran the plates, the report came back that the car was stolen in Great Falls. Officers pursued the car into Glacier County, where Glacier County deputies joined the chase. As the car continued into Pondera County, the Glacier deputies asked for permission to continue pursuit, which they were given. Pondera County Sheriff and deputies responded to assist. “We could not drive fast enough to get there before it was over,” said Pondera County Sheriff, Robert Skorupa.
Law enforcement pursued the car as it continued into Valier, down Montana Street towards Lake Frances. Realizing it was a dead end, the driver turned into what looked like an alley, but was a private drive. Deputies had spiked the tires and the driver was stuck in gravel.
The driver exited the car, reportedly with a weapon, at which point a Glacier County Deputy fired two shots into the man. He was taken by ambulance to Pondera Medical Center in Conrad, then put on the Mercy Flight to Benefis in Great Falls. He is currently in the Intensive Care Unit and his name has not been released.
The driver of the stolen car was on probation and parole. Although he committed several offences including reckless driving, criminal endangerment, various traffic offences, driving a stolen vehicle and possibly more, he has not been charged as of Sept. 8.
Glacier County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) Public Information Officer Judd Milender, released the following information late Monday morning, Sept. 7.
On Sept. 4, 2020 Glacier County Sheriff’s Office deputies assisted Blackfeet Law Enforcement Services (BLES) with a pursuit of a stolen vehicle. The driver of the vehicle had also committed offenses in Browning. The pursuit was terminated in Valier, Mont., when the suspect drove into a dead end. The suspect exited the vehicle and was confronted by a GCSO deputy. The suspect brandished a knife and the deputy fired his service weapon hitting the suspect.
The suspect was immediately rendered aid by GCSO deputies and BLES officers. The suspect was then transported to Benefis in Great Falls for treatment. As of Monday, Sept. 7, the suspect was hospitalized in the intensive care unit at Benefis.
Pondera County Sheriff’s Office secured the scene and requested agents from the Montana Department of Criminal Investigation (DCI) respond to the scene. DCI took over the investigation and is currently actively investigating the circumstances surrounding the officer involved shooting.
The deputy involved has been placed on administrative leave, as is protocol in officer involved shootings, pending the outcome of DCI’s investigation.
Blackfeet Law Enforcement and Glacier County Sheriff's Deputies were involved in a high-speed pursuit on Friday, September 4th, 2020. This occurred between noon and 1:00 pm. The pursuit started in Browning and ended in Valier, by way of Highway 89, Joe Show, Hugo Aronson and the Valier Highway.
During the pursuit, the suspect attempted to run several vehicles off the road by swerving into their lane and forcing them to move over to avoid a head-on collision.
If you, or someone you know, were a victim of this reckless behavior please contact the Sheriff's Office and file a report. Ask for Captain Seifert or Sergeant Milender. 406-873-2711.
Officials at the Montana Department of Justice announced today that Montanans, especially senior citizens, should be aware of a new tactic being used in the old lottery scam.
The new twist works like this: A scammer calls you, claiming to be from the “Montana State Gaming Commission.” The scammer says if you pay $600, you’ll have a chance to win $1 million.
“Legitimate lotteries never require people to send money to claim a prize or to have a chance at winning,” Attorney General Tim Fox said. “Because older persons are especially vulnerable due to physical and mental decline, social isolation, and their tendency to trust others, the most effective thing we can do to combat this scam is public education. Remind your parents, grandparents, and elderly friends about the importance of staying vigilant for lottery scams and other rip-offs that can happen if they engage with these callers,” Fox added.
Another red flag? The “Montana State Gaming Commission” doesn’t exist. The Gambling Control Division at the Montana Department of Justice is responsible for state gaming regulation. Angela Nunn, Gambling Control Division Administrator, said, “Real lotteries never contact the winner, or other players, because they don’t know who these people are. So, keep in mind two things: If you receive a call claiming to be from the Montana State Gaming Commission, it’s a scam; if you’re asked to send money in relation to lotteries, it’s a scam.”
Nunn also advised Montanans questioning the validity of a contact from the Gambling Control Division to call her office at (406) 444-1971 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm.
For more information on lottery scams, visit the Montana Lottery’s website, or Montana Department of Justice’s Office of Consumer Protection’s (OCP) information here. If you or a family member are the victim of a scam, contact local law enforcement. You may also report scams to OCP by calling 1-800-481-6896 (toll-free) or (406) 444-4500, or by emailing email@example.com.
A randomized, controlled clinical trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of a treatment regimen consisting of the antiviral remdesivir plus the immunomodulator interferon beta-1a in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has begun. The study, called the Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial 3 (ACTT 3), is anticipated to enroll more than 1,000 hospitalized adults with COVID-19 at as many as 100 sites in the United States and abroad. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, is sponsoring the trial.ACTT 3 is the third iteration of NIAID’s Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial (ACTT). ACTT began on Feb. 21 to evaluate remdesivir, an investigational broad-spectrum antiviral discovered and developed by Gilead Sciences, Inc, of Foster City, California. A preliminary analysis of ACTT data found that patients who received remdesivir had a statistically significant shorter time to recovery compared to patients who received placebo. These results were published on May 22. More detailed information about the results, including more comprehensive data, will be available in a forthcoming report.Subcutaneous interferon beta-1a, a medication manufactured by Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, is approved in the U.S. and more than 90 other countries for the treatment of multiple sclerosis. The drug is marketed under the brand name Rebif by EMD Serono, the North American biopharmaceutical business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. Interferon beta-1a has the same amino acid sequence as a naturally occurring protein called interferon beta, which is part of a class of proteins called type 1 interferons. Infected cells normally produce type 1 interferons to help the immune system fight pathogens, especially viruses. Interferon beta has both antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties.
Laboratory studies suggest that the normal interferon response is suppressed in some people after infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. In the laboratory, type 1 interferon can inhibit SARS-CoV-2 and two closely related viruses, SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. In addition, two small randomized controlled trials suggest that treatment with interferon beta may benefit patients with COVID-19. The combination of interferon beta-1a and remdesivir for treating COVID-19 has not been evaluated in a large, randomized controlled trial.
In accordance with standard clinical research protocols, eligible patients who provide informed consent will participate in ACTT 3. Participants must have laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection with evidence of lung involvement, including a need for supplemental oxygen, abnormal chest X-rays, or illness requiring mechanical ventilation. People with confirmed infection who have mild symptoms or no apparent symptoms will not be included in the study.
ACTT 3 participants are being randomly assigned in a 1-to-1 ratio to receive either subcutaneous interferon beta-1a plus remdesivir (combination therapy) or remdesivir alone. Neither the participants nor the study team will know who is receiving which treatment regimen. All participants will receive standard doses of remdesivir and either interferon beta-1a or a placebo. Those in the combination therapy group will receive interferon beta-1a as a 44-microgram subcutaneous injection every other day for a total of four doses during hospitalization. Those in the remdesivir-only group will receive a matching placebo subcutaneous injection every other day for a total of four doses during hospitalization.
Investigators will evaluate whether time to recovery is shorter in the combination therapy group relative to the remdesivir-only group. Recovery is defined as the participant being well enough for hospital discharge, meaning the participant either no longer requires supplemental oxygen or ongoing medical care in the hospital, or is no longer hospitalized (with or without some limitation on activities). Recovery is evaluated up until day 29. A key secondary goal of the study is to compare patient outcomes at day 15 using an ordinal eight-point scale ranging from fully recovered to death. The trial also will compare other secondary outcome variables between treatment groups, including mortality alone.
An independent data and safety monitoring board (DSMB) will monitor ongoing results to ensure patient well-being and safety as well as study integrity. Preliminary results are expected in the fall of 2020.
The second iteration of the Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial, ACTT 2, began on May 8 to evaluate the safety and efficacy of remdesivir plus the anti-inflammatory drug baricitinib for treating hospitalized adults with COVID-19. A product licensed to Eli Lilly and Company by Incyte and marketed under the brand name Olumiant, baricitinib(link is external) is approved in the U.S. and more than 65 other countries as a treatment for adults with moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis. ACTT 2 closed to enrollment on June 30 after recruiting 1,034 participants at 71 U.S. and international sites.
NIAID conducts and supports research — at NIH, throughout the United States, and worldwide — to study the causes of infectious and immune-mediated diseases, and to develop better means of preventing, diagnosing and treating these illnesses. News releases, fact sheets and other NIAID-related materials are available on the NIAID website.
Recently River’s Edge, the printer for the Independent-Observer, the Great Falls Tribune and several other local newspapers gave notice that they are going out of business.
Last year New Media Investment Group, a holding company that controls GateHouse Media, acquired Gannett, the owner of USA Today and all their holdings, including the Great Falls Tribune. In their press release, New Media Investment Group announced their intent to move to online publishing only. That was the death knell for River’s Edge.
As a result, the I-O needed to find a new printer. Pat Lee, the I-O’s publisher, has made arrangements with the The Bozeman Daily Chronicle to do our printing. This requires a change in our deadline from Friday at 5 p.m. to Wednesday at 5 p.m. This change will take effect on June 24. We can’t make any exceptions, so we would appreciate it if everyone who wishes to submit articles, ads, legals, photos, classifieds, etc. will understand and abide by our new deadline.
"Recent calls by some misguided individuals to defund law enforcement agencies in the wake of the George Floyd tragedy are not only reckless overreactions to a serious situation, but are an insult to the thousands of good law enforcement officers across our country who put their lives on the line every day to protect public safety. I am dedicated to equal justice for all, and to ensuring that the Montana Law Enforcement Academy and our Police Safety Officer Standards and Training Council continue to uphold rigorous standards that protect the rights, lives, and property of all."
Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) construction projects will improve sidewalks in the northcentral Montana communities of Rudyard, Shelby, Valier, Conrad, and Fairfield this summer. The construction will focus on improving sidewalk intersection ramps in all the targeted communities.
The work begins in Rudyard in early May.
o Reed Street (Main Street) from 1st Avenue to 5thAvenue
o US Highway 2 between Adams Avenue and 5th Avenue
o Oilfield Avenue between 5th and 7thStreets
o Downtown along US Highway 2 and Montana, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Avenues
o Montana Street from Teton to Railroad Avenue
o 4th Avenue Southwest from Sunset Boulevard to Main Street (US Highway 91)
o Main Street (US Highway 91) from 7th Avenue Southwest to 2nd Avenue Northwest
o US Highway 89 from 3rd Avenue South to 4thAvenue North
Most traffic impacts will be confined to the shoulders of the designated roadways. Drivers and pedestrians should use caution when near the work zones. Signs will be posted in all work areas directing pedestrians around the construction.
These projects are part of the statewide strategy called the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Transition Plan. The plan addresses mobility needs along state-owned roadways. It will improve access for disabled persons and the general public while increasing safety.
For updates, questions, comments, or concerns:
• Call the toll-free construction information hotline (800) 514-1898. Please leave a message if there is no answer.
• To subscribe to community specific updates:
§ Text “RudyardADA” to 555888
§ Email firstname.lastname@example.org
§ Text “ShelbyADA” to 555888
§ Email email@example.com
§ Text “ValierADA” to 555888
§ Email firstname.lastname@example.org
§ Text “ConradADA” to 555888
§ Email email@example.com
§ Text “FairfieldADA” to 555888
§ Email firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition, questions can always be asked using the email addresses listed above. Information on all work for this project can be found on the MDT website at https://www.mdt.mt.gov/pubinvolve/centralMTada/.
When traveling during construction season, watch for the "cone zone" and for workers on the highway. Remember to manage your speed, space, and stress. These workers spend their days working a short distance from fast moving vehicles, and while they make every effort to work safely, they are counting on you to pay attention, slow down, and be careful as you pass through a work zone. The vision for Montana is Zero – Zero fatalities and Zero serious injuries on any public road in the state. Remember to buckle up every time you get into a vehicle and never drive impaired or allow an impaired person to drive.
The Montana Department of Transportation together with its construction contracting partners continue to take the COVID-19 pandemic very seriously. Construction projects on Montana’s roads and bridges are considered an “essential” operation and will continue moving forward as scheduled in 2020. Construction workers will continue several measures to help keep employees, contractors and the public safe during the construction season. Some of the measures include following social distancing and good hygiene guidelines, and not reporting to work if showing symptoms of illness. For more information visit https://covid19.mt.gov/
1st Choice Realty Open, Call for appointment 278-9129
1st Liberty Federal Credit Union: Drive thru open
Branding Iron Open : Bar 2 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.; Restaurant 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. Bowling Alley and pool tables closed
Brown-Fitchner & Assoc. Business by phone or email; Open Mon-thurs 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Fri 8-3
Coaches Corner: Take out, curbside pickup and delivery. Free masks; 4:30 – 8 PM
Conrad Building Center Open
Country Charm Open Mon-Fri 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sat 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. In-store shopping limited to one; curbside delivery
Elings Insurance Office open, appointment recommended
Folklore: Take out, curbside pickup and delivery. Free masks, 7:30 AM – 2 PM
Gary & Leo’s IGA: Open, also providing delivery for AT RISK residents, free masks
H & R Realty Open, Call for appointment 271-2080
Home Café: Restaurant seating, open 6 a.m. - 2 p.m. Social distance seating to be followed
Independence Bank, Lobby and Drive-thru open.
Java Hut: Delivery and drive thru only. Free masks; 6:30 AM – 1 PM
Main Drive-in Mon - Sat 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Marias Greenhouse Open 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. 576-7297
Northern Front Guns and Ammo Open Tues. - Sat. 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Olsons’Drug and Village Drug: Both Open. Both will continue to offer home delivery
Pet Paws Grooming and Supply Open 10 a.m. - 5 pm. Call for appointment 271-7394
Pondera County Insurance: ? Call for hours 271-2034
Senior Center Open for delivery and pick up only. Call 271-3911 to reserve a meal
Stockman Bank Lobbies open
Subway: Open for pickup and take out 10 AM – 8 PM
Sunset Dental Care Mon - Fre 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Super 8: Closed
The Keg: Open for pickup, takeout and delivery 11 AM – 8 PM
The Independent-Observer:: Lobby Open Hours 8 AM - 5 PM
Town Pump: Open 24 hours.
Windrift Hill Open Mon - Fri 8 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Sat 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Due to the school building closure, Conrad Schools will postpone kindergarten screening until a later date. In order to register your child for kindergarten, please go to the Conrad Schools homepage, www.conradschools.org, to complete the kindergarten registration form.