GREAT FALLS — A federal trial is set next month for a 21-year-old man charged with fatally stabbing another man after a wedding last July in East Glacier.
William Arocha Jr. was already convicted of assault and negligent endangerment in Blackfeet Tribal Court for the July 5 death of 35-year-old Shane LaPlant of Browning.
The Great Falls Tribune reports Arocha was sentenced to one year and nine months in jail and ordered to pay $775,000 in restitution to the victim’s family. Tribal prosecutor Dawn Gray says restitution is the purpose for the tribal court conviction, because someone who takes a life is responsible to the victim’s family for the rest of their life.
Arocha faces a federal trial on May 7 on a charge of second-degree murder.
Prosecutors say LaPlant was stabbed at least two-dozen times.
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