HARDIN – The Crow Agency man accused of killing a woman with a frying pan denied the allegations on Tuesday.

James Brien, 22, is charged in Big Horn County District Court with one count of deliberate homicide and two counts of assault.

He pleaded not guilty to each of the charges.

The Big Horn County Coroner identified the victim as Lelani White Hip, 48, of Hardin.

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The prosecutor also noted that Brien is a suspect in a Yellowstone County deliberate homicide case, but did not specify which case Brien is connected with.

Brien allegedly assaulted White Hip and two other women at a trailer in Hardin on Feb. 8.

A witness told authorities that Brien told her he “laid three girls out with a frying pan.”

Deputies responded to find two women with injuries and White Hip in and out of consciousness.

White Hip was transported to a Billings hospital and placed on life support. She died Saturday.

A motive for the assault was not identified in court documents.

Brien is being held on a $1 million bond.

Related: Hardin woman dies after being hit with a frying pan; man charged with murder

Reporting by Aja Goare for MTN News

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