Montana Supreme Court: Man Charged 1987 Rape Can’t be Tried

DNA evidence linked Ronald Dwight Tipton to rape of child, but statute of limitations has passed

By Molly Priddy

BILLINGS — The Montana Supreme Court says a man charged with raping an 8-year-old girl after DNA evidence linked him to the 1987 case cannot be tried because the statute of limitations has run out.

The Billings Gazette reported Thursday that the court ordered charges dismissed against Ronald Dwight Tipton.

Tipton was charged with three counts of sexual intercourse without consent in 2015 after DNA testing linked him to the case in 2014. He pleaded not guilty.

The statute of limitations in the case expired in 2001.

Another man was convicted of the rape and spent 15 years in prison before DNA evidence exonerated him in 2002.

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