NewsCrime and Courts


Man charged in fatal Martin City shooting pleads not guilty

Del Orrin Crawford
Posted at 12:47 PM, Sep 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-07 12:44:28-04

KALISPELL - The man who is accused of shooting and killing a woman outside of the Southfork Saloon in Martin City was arraigned in Flathead County District Court Tuesday morning.

Del Orrin Crawford pleaded not guilty to one count of Deliberate Homicide, Attempted Deliberate Homicide, and Tampering with or Fabricating Physical Evidence.

The charges filed carry a maximum life term in the Montana State Prison.

Charging documents state that the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office received multiple calls regarding a shooting at the Southfork Saloon in Martin City at 1 a.m. on Aug. 27.

Deputies arrived on scene and observed Doug Crosswhite on the road in front of the bar with a tourniquet around his arm and a seal on his chest wound.

Deputies also observed 28-year-old Whisper Dawn Mari Sellars of Hungry Horse receiving CPR on the ground with a chest wound.

Sellars was pronounced dead at the scene while Crosswhite was transported to Logan Health for further medical treatment.

Witness Chelsea Bauska had been performing CPR on Whisper Sellars. Law enforcement conducted interviews on the scene with Bauska.

Bauska reported the incident began when Crawford saw some people trying to start a golf cart outside of the bar and the situation escalated, according to charging documents.

Bauska stated she tried to de-escalate the situation, but Crawford and Sellars got into an argument with pushing and shoving. Bauska stated Crawford fired his gun hitting Sellars and Crosswhite.

Deputies spoke with another witness, Bradley Crosswhite, who stated Sellars, and Alicia Crosswhite were sitting on the golf cart taking pictures when they were confronted by Crawford.

Bradley Crosswhite stated that Crawford, Sellars and Alicia Crosswhite began to argue.

Bradley said Crawford pushed Sellars and Alicia Crosswhite. She said Doug Crosswhite pushed Crawford in response. Bradley said Crawford fell backward, got up, pulled a handgun from his waistline, and began shooting.

Charging documents state Crawford told the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office over the phone he had fired his weapon in self-defense. Crawford was found on South Fork Road and placed under arrest.

Charging documents state that Crawford refused to tell law enforcement where the firearm was located, saying “it was in a safe place and the officers would not find it.”

A trial date has not been set.