Big Timber Man Pleads Not Guilty to New Year’s Eve Killing

Kevin Charles Walla, 42, appeared in Sweet Grass County court for death of 44-year-old

By Tristan Scott

BILLINGS — A Big Timber man has pleaded not guilty to shooting and killing a man on New Year’s Eve.

Kevin Charles Walla, 42, pleaded not guilty last week in District Court in Sweet Grass County to a deliberate homicide charge in the death of Richard Allen Bowers, 44. Walla remains jailed in Gallatin County with his bail set at $120,000.

Walla also pleaded not guilty to unlawful possession of a firearm. He has a previous felony conviction for drug distribution with a firearm and is not allowed to possess guns.

Walla called 911 at 5:20 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and reported he’d shot a man who tried to rob him, court records said.

However, Walla’s daughter told investigators that Bowers had been invited to the apartment. Officers noticed Bowers shoes had been taken off by the door. Neighbors heard the men arguing, The Billings Gazette reported.

Walla’s daughter also said she saw her father with the gun and that he told her: “I’m going to make this guy leave.”

She left the apartment with a friend for a sleepover and said through the window she saw her father “standing and gesturing wildly as he stood over Bowers,” charging documents said. The 911 call came shortly after she left, prosecutors said.

Bowers died of a small-caliber gunshot wound to his upper abdomen, the autopsy found.

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