Montana man convicted of vehicular homicide

MISSOULA, Mont. — A Missoula man has been found guilty in the death of a Washington state man who was struck and killed by a car while walking on a sidewalk.

A District Court jury deliberated for less than 30 minutes Friday before convicting Brian Holm, 50, of vehicular homicide while under the influence in the Nov. 9 death of Brian Beaver of Aberdeen.

Court records say Beaver, 24, and two friends had stopped in Missoula on their way to Yellowstone National Park and were walking on the sidewalk when Holm’s car crossed into the opposite lane and swerved up onto the sidewalk.

Prosecutors argued Holm and his wife had been drinking at a Lolo bar and his blood alcohol level was 0.10 nearly 90 minutes after the crash. Court records say he also had a prescription sleep aid, antidepressant and painkiller in his system.

“In making these decisions, the defendant completely disregarded the safety of others,” Deputy Missoula County Attorney Shawn Thomas said in his closing arguments Friday morning.

Public defender Scott Spencer argued there was no evidence Holm was actually impaired that night. Holm testified Thursday that he swerved into the wrong lanes to avoid a head-on crash.

“For that, you could say, ‘Brian Holm, it is still your fault, but it is not a crime,'” Spencer argued.

Beaver’s widow, Crystal, said she was pleased with the verdict.

District Judge Dusty Deschamps scheduled sentencing for Sept. 12. Holm remains free on $50,000 bond.

Talk to us

More in Local News

A grave marker for Blaze the horse. (Photo provided)
After Darrington woman’s horse died, she didn’t know what to do

Sidney Montooth boarded her horse Blaze. When he died, she was “a wreck” — and at a loss as to what to do with his remains.

A fatal accident the afternoon of Dec. 18 near Clinton ended with one of the cars involved bursting into flames. The driver of the fully engulfed car was outside of the vehicle by the time first responders arrived at the scene. (Whidbey News-Times/Submitted photo)
Driver sentenced in 2021 crash that killed Everett couple

Danielle Cruz, formerly of Lynnwood, gets 17½ years in prison. She was impaired by drugs when she caused the crash that killed Sharon Gamble and Kenneth Weikle.

A person walks out of the Everett Clinic on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
The Everett Clinic changing name to parent company Optum in 2024

The parent company says the name change will not affect quality of care for patients in Snohomish County.

Tirhas Tesfatsion (GoFundMe) 20210727
Lynnwood settles for $1.7 million after 2021 suicide at city jail

Jail staff reportedly committed 16 safety check violations before they found Tirhas Tesfatsion, 47, unresponsive in her cell.

Diane Kay Thompson, center, listens during their sentencing at Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, Washington on Friday, Sept. 15, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Marysville woman sentenced to 2 years for running over, killing husband

Diane Thompson pleaded guilty to manslaughter. “My home was taken, my daughters hate me and I have no money to my name,” she said.

The Marysville Municipal Jail is pictured Thursday, Sept. 14, 2023, in Marysville, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Marysville weighs mandatory jail time for repeated ‘public disorder’

The “three strikes” proposal sets a minimum sentence of 30 days in jail for crimes like public drug use and trespassing.

Cash is used for a purchase at Molly Moon's Ice Cream in Edmonds, Washington on Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
County Council delays vote on requiring businesses to take cash

Concerns over information and enforcement postponed the council’s scheduled vote on the ordinance Wednesday in Snohomish County.

Thrill-seekers fly through the air on a ride during opening day of the Evergreen State Fair on Thursday, August 24, 2023, in Monroe, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Evergreen State Fair attendance dips 9% from 2022

Slightly over 228,000 people attended the fair this year in Monroe, down from 253,000 last year and 355,000 in 2019.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Darrington in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
New fire east of Darrington closes stretch of rural road

The Tenas Creek fire, which started late last week, was 90% contained Wednesday after burning 38 acres.

Most Read