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Assault and strangulation of partner sends Hardin man to prison

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Posted at 9:42 PM, Dec 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-21 12:37:24-05

A Hardin man who admitted punching and strangling his partner last year on the Crow Reservation was sentenced on Wednesday to 33 months in prison and three years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.

James Keith Bellrock, Jr., 44, pleaded guilty in August to assault, resulting in serious bodily injury to a dating partner and to assault of a dating partner by strangulation.

The prosecution said in court records that on Jan. 10, 2018, the victim told FBI agents during an interview at St. Vincent Healthcare’s emergency room in Billings that Bellrock had assaulted her at their St. Xavier residence, on the Crow Reservation.

Bellrock had become angry and violent with the victim, punching her in the head and face several times and strangling her until she lost consciousness.

Blood samples collected from the residence and from coveralls worn by Bellrock at the time of the assault showed strong support that the blood belonged to the victim.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lori Suek and Law Intern Ryan Warner prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI.