Prosecutors: Hamilton Shooting Prompted By Red Beer Argument

Shooting left one man wounded and a dog dead after dispute over whether to use Clamato or tomato juice

By Tristan Scott

HAMILTON — Prosecutors say a shooting in Hamilton this weekend that left a man wounded and his dog dead was prompted by an argument over using Clamato or tomato juice to make red beer.

The Ravalli Republic reports Justice of the Peace Jennifer Ray set 59-year-old Monte Leon Hanson’s bail Monday at the prosecution’s request of $250,000.

Defense attorney Ron Piper had argued for a $50,000 bond. He said his client is a long-time Hamilton resident with no criminal record.

Police say 29-year-old Joe Lewis was bartending in downtown Hamilton when his neighbor walked in, ordered a red beer and started an argument, saying Clamato juice was against his religion.

A charging affidavit says when Lewis returned home from work later that night and went out to walk his dog, Hanson followed him outside and shot them both.

Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup.

Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox.