Man Pleads Guilty to Role in Missoula Garage Burglary

Garage burglary preceded the fatal shooting of a German exchange student

By Molly Priddy

MISSOULA  — A Missoula man has pleaded guilty to his role in a garage burglary that preceded the fatal shooting of a German exchange student who broke into the same garage 10 days later apparently looking for alcohol.

Tristan Staber pleaded guilty Wednesday in District Court to conspiracy to commit burglary and conspiracy to commit criminal trespass for the April 17. Prosecutors said Staber acted as a lookout while a juvenile entered unlocked cars and garages. The juvenile allegedly took marijuana, a bong, wallets and an iPhone from Markus Kaarma’s garage and vehicles.

Court records say Kaarma and his wife set up a surveillance camera in the garage to catch any future break-ins.

On April 27, Kaarma shot 17-year-old Diren Dede in his garage.

Kaarma has pleaded not guilty to deliberate homicide in Dede’s death. His trial is scheduled for December.


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