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Man killed by Montana Highway Patrol trooper identified

Posted at 3:25 PM, Nov 16, 2020

A man shot and killed by a Montana Highway Patrol trooperFriday in Stillwater County was allegedly throwing "flaming objects" from a car window prior to the confrontation, according to John Barnes of the Montana Department of Justice.

The man was identified as Charles Craig Meeks, 38 of Pinedale, Wyoming.

Barnes said in a news release that a state trooper, Stillwater County deputy and Columbus police officer responded to the incident around 6:30 p.m. Friday on the westbound lanes of Interstate 90.

The driver accelerated beyond the speed limit and was stopped at mile marker 403. He refused to cooperate, and the trooper fired one round from his department-issued shotgun, according to Barnes.

Barnes did not say whether Meeks was armed, and he did not identify any of the law-enforcement officers. All three are on administrative leave, which is standard procedure.

Agents with the Montana Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) are investigating.

Once the investigation is complete, DCI will give the case file to the Stillwater County Attorney’s Office for review. The county attorney and coroner will schedule an inquest pursuant to state law.