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01109;18\'\AUTO\3 - 0!)3 1 T f,ge MONTANA HISTORCAL LIBRA R\r PC) BOX 201201 HELENA MT Zi-1201 Me hill vie toolliii,111111e 1B U Wvi)NEst),‘‘ . , M.:cf.:mm:1i 23, 2015 - VOLI 'AO.: 134, Numiti. g 51 MAKING HEADLINES SINCE 1881 - DILLON, MONTANA - 75 CENTS Massage therapist Randall Lerman Slick roads lead sentenced on rape conviction to 1-15 fatality By J.P. Plutt Dillon Tribune, staff Randall Lee Lerman, 62, received 40 years with 35 suspended at his sentencing hearing Tuesday at Bea- verhead County Courthouse. Judge Katherine Bidegaray of Sidney passed the sentence on Lerman's conviction of rape stemming from a 2014 incident in which Lerman sexually molested and then digitally penetrated a 20 -year -old patient during a therapy session at his Dillon office. A jury needed just 35 minutes to convict Lerman following his two-day trial in July. Since the conviction, 10 other alleged victims came forward to accuse Lerman of similar acts. Six of those women testified at the sentencing hearing and all 10 submitted reports for the Pre -Sentence Investigation. Beaverhead County Attorney Jed Fitch recommended a sentence of 30 years with a 10 -year parole restriction. Defense attorney Ed Sheehy of Butte suggested a sentence of 20 years with 18 suspended. Bidegaray's sentence included the requirement that Lerman must com- plete Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the Sexual Offender Treatment Program before being considered for parole. In Mon- tana, a convict can be considered for parole after serving 25 percent of their sentence. The sentencing guideline for rape is from two to 100 years. The young victim, who provided emotional testimony during Lerman's trial, did not address the court during the sentencing phase. Her husband did take the stand and explained that his wife wanted to get past the pain of the ordeal. \We don't want anybody else to go through what we've gone through,\ said the husband. \It's been hell.\ Fitch read a letter from the victim to the court. Probation Officer Claris Yuhas de- scribed Lerman as a predator during her testimony on Tuesday. Sheehy established that Phase I and Phase 2 of the Sexual Offender Treat- ment Program at Montana State Prison takes about 20 months to finish. The 20 -year -old victim, a newlywed who just days before her November 2014 appointment at Lerman's office in the Evergreen Center, received news that she was pregnant, described in court during the trial her experience with Lerman. The November 2014 appointment was the victim's fourth with Lerman. The first three sessions seemed ap- propriate and professional, according to the victim. Early on in the fourth Sentenced Randall Lee Lerman, 63, received a sentence of 40 years with 35 suspended for a rape conviction at his sentenc- ing hearing for a rape conviction at Beaverhead County Courthouse on Tuesday I errnan is shown above during Tuesday's hearing. Judge Katherine Bidegaray of Sidney presided over the sentencing hearing via Judicial Vision Net, a two-way televised system. Bidegaray remanded Lerman to the custody of the Beaverhead County Sheriff's Department. He will remain at Beaverhead County Jail until he is transferred to Montana State Prison P Plutt photo session, the victim realized the visit was different. In court documents, the victim de- scribed a session that quickly became sexual in nature. Lerman began touch- ing her breasts and vagina, repeatedly rubbing and touching the young woman in inappropriate places. When Lerman digitally penetrated the woman with his finger, the victim said she was initially shocked and could not speak. When Lerman penetrated the victim a second time, she raised her hand and told Lerman, \That's too much, stop.\ The victim recalled that she was trembling with fear as the assault con- tinued and she remained on the table, eyes closed, fighting back tears. The failed trial strategy for Lerman and his attorney was that the acts were consensual. By J.P. Mutt Dillon Tribune staff Montana Highway Patrol 'Trooper Mitch Voss cited low visibility, blowing snow and slick roads as the cause of a fatal accident on 1-15 Monday after- noon near Lima. A female passenger, 55, was pronounced dead at Barrett Hospital and Healthcare in Dillon fol- lowing transport after the accident. According to Voss, the woman had awoke from a nap and began to adjust her seatbelt when her husband, 61, lost control of the vehicle. The Ford 350 hit a guardrail, rolled onto the passenger side, and then popped back onto the wheels atop the guardrail. The victim was ejected from the vehicle. The husband and two granddaugh- ters, ages 7 and 10, wore seatbelts and were unharmed. The couple made their home in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The victims name has not been re- leased pending notification of relatives. Voss said the accident occurred at about 3:30 p.m. on Monday. Voss says the winter road condi- tions have sparked a high number of accidents on the highways, the major- ity of which are slide -offs. He advises that drivers need to slow down when presented with the winter conditions and keep a safe following distance from other vehicles on the road. He says it is important not to accelerate or slow down at a quick rate Local schools on break for holiday season Dillon public school students began their winter breaks yesterday after- noon and will remain on break through Jan. 3, with regular class schedules resuming Monday, Jan. 4. For more information, call BCHS (683-2361), Parkview Elementary (683-4311) or Dillon Middle School (683-4311). Dillon City BlIA offers rides to Elks dinner The Dillon City Bus offers free rides anywhere in town from 8 a.m. to noon and 1-5 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and Thurs- days from 8 a.m, to noon and 1-3 p.m. The city bus will only give rides on Christmas Day to the Elks Lodge for its free Christmas Dinner, which will take place 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Rides for Christmas Day need to be arranged by noon on Christmas Eve. To arrange for a ride, call 406-660-4247 Nourse completes forward past Montana Western AD returning as head football coach By M.P. Regan Dillon Tribune staff A former wide receiver for the University of Montana Western, UMW Athletic Director Ryan Nourse yesterday ran a crisp curl pat- tern into an open spot in hopes it will help the Bulldog football program keep moving the chains forward. Nourse announced Tuesday afternoon that he's circling back into the UMW head football coaching position he sped out of three years ago to become the UMW Al). \I'm going to re -take the head football coaching position and I'm going to serve as the interim AI),\ Nourse told the Dillon Tribune Tuesday, when he also announced his decision to Bulldog football players. Those players found out the previous week that their head coach, B.J. Robertson, would he leaving the program to take an assistant coach- ing position with Montana State University (see story on page 9). \It's been three years that I've been athletic director, and I've loved it. I'm so thankful to Montana Western and the opportunity it gave me as athletic director,\ added Nourse, who became UMW's Al) in 201.3 after serving two full seasons as the school's head football coach. \I jumped at that opportunity to become Al). I had a good vision of where that part of the athletic department could go and I just felt like I could help Montana Western by doing that,\ continued Nourse, who made his first big decision as AD when he tabbed Robertson to become the Dawgs head football coach in 2013 \But my passion really lies in coaching and working with young people. I'm ready to coach football again.\ In succeeding the man who succeeded him as Bulidog head football coach, Nourse is put- ting himself in a similar situation as the one he hired Robertson to step into. Robertson took a team that had gone 4-6 the previous season but was stacked with young talent recruited by Nourse and over the course of three years built it into a 7-3 team that came within one win and one play of earning the Frontier Conference title in 2015. Now Nourse will inherit a roster stacked with young talent recruited by Robertson. along with some upperclassmen he himself recruited, including reigning NAIA sack king Reno Ward. \B.J. Robertson did an incredible job build- ing up the football program. He recruited a bunch of great young players,\ commented Nourse, who began rebuilding the Bulldogs in December 2010. shortly after the team had finished with a 1-9 record. Nourse doubled that win total in his first season as head coach, then doubled it again in 2012, when the Dawgs won four games and were in contention in the fourth quarters of four others. Nourse said he hopes to smooth the transi tion into next season by retaining as many of Robertson's assistants as possible. He said he'd already gained a commitment to return from Rob Goode, the young defensive coordinator who helped mold the Dawgs I) into one of the most effective units in the NA IA the past two seasons. \Rob Goode is an exceptional coach. I've already talked to him He'll be back,\ said Nourse, who will also talk about returning to Terry Thomas. the legendary Hall of Fame coach who came out of retirement after a wildly successful stint with the Dillon Beavers head coach to act as the Dawgs offensive coordina- tor last season. Nourse himself was part of that Bulldog staff with Goode and Thomas last season, when he served as an assistant coach for UMW. \I just tried to help out. As AD, I tried to be interactive and be a good resource for the other coaches,\ said Nourse, who like other Frontier Conference athletic directors, is forced to try to stretch limited resources. UMW will begin a search for a new, full-time athletic director on July 1,2016, with Nourse continuing to play the role on an interim basis as well serve as the Bulldog head football coach until a suitable new Al) is found. \('hancellor (Beth) Weatherby, she's so awe some. I know she'll go out and hire a great new Al) in due time,\ Nourse said. Before becoming Western's head football coach for the first time in 2010, Nourse worked as an assistant coach at Morningside College in Iowa. where he had earned a masters of arts in professional education in 2007. He had served AS the offensive coordinator, quarterbacks coach, recruiting coordinator and camp coordinator in 2010 for Morningside, where he had also worked 200.3- 4)13 as the as sistant head coach and defensive coordinator Nourse earned a bachelor of science degree in history and political science education in 1997 from the University of Montana Western A member of the UMW sports Hall of Fame. Nourse was a starting wide receiver for the Bulldog football team during his undergraduate days and played on the Dawgs 1994 Frontier Conference title team Back up plan Montana Western Athletic Director and former football coach Ryan Nourse (left) helped outgoing football coach B.J. Robertson (right) with coaching duties this past season Robertson took a job at MSU last week. Nourse announced on Tuesday that he was going to return to the sideline as head UMW football coach .1 P Plutt photo 11111111 06605 13160 13 Si it( ROO.; To THE DILLON TRIM NE ToDAy — CALI, 683-2331 -1-NI \IL s yout NEWS TO EDIToR@DILL0\ I .«)N1