Kalispell man gets 12 years in prison for meth, firearms crimes
BILLINGS—A Kalispell man who admitted drug trafficking and firearms crimes after law enforcement seized meth from his Billings hotel room last year was sentenced today to 12 years in prison and to five years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.
Christopher Scott Hurst, 30, pleaded guilty in December to possession with intent to distribute meth and to possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided.
Prosecutors said in court records that Hurst was arrested on Feb. 27, 2018 at a Billings hotel. Agents with the Eastern Montana High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force served a search warrant on Hurst’s room and seized about a half-ounce of meth and $1,488 cash. After the search, hotel staff found a handgun that had been missed in the initial search.
Hurst told investigators that he had been getting meth, heroin and cocaine from two persons in California and that these persons had been bringing large quantities of drugs to Billings for months. Hurst also admitted he had been getting four to eight ounces of meth almost every day for months.
In addition, a witness who was familiar with Hurst’s activities told agents he had repeatedly seen Hurst with firearms and meth and that Hurst had traded firearms for meth on several occasions.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Colin Rubich prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI, EMHIDTA and Billings Police Department.
The case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), which is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.