A 36-year-old Kalispell man has admitted to allegations that he slit another man’s throat with a box cutter at an area bar last April, pleading guilty this week to felony aggravated assault as part of a plea bargain with prosecutors, who agreed to amend their initial charge to a lesser offense.
Brockton Lorn Ferguson was charged last April with attempted deliberate homicide, an offense to which he pleaded not guilty; however, he changed his plea at a Nov. 16 hearing in Flathead County District Court before Judge Robert B. Allison. In exchange for his guilty plea, prosecutors with the Flathead County Attorney’s Office agreed to reduce the charge.
According to court records, Kalispell Police Department officers responded to reports of an assault at the Scoreboard Bar in Kalispell on April 5 at 9:30 p.m. At the scene, they found a 27-year-old man who had a deep neck wound with his trachea visible who was coughing up blood, according to charging documents.
Prior to the stabbing, witnesses said the victim instigated a physical confrontation by slapping Ferguson across the face. According to court records, the defendant walked away from his aggressor but allegedly returned a short time later, punching the victim and slitting his throat with a box cutter before fleeing the scene.
Officers viewed security camera footage of the assault, which was consistent with witness statements and showed Ferguson stabbing another man’s throat until someone pulled him off the victim, records state.
Law enforcement later located Ferguson, who during his arrest “made statements to himself about needing to do laundry now after slitting someone’s throat,” records state.
Kalispell Fire Department officials transported the victim to Logan Health.
Ferguson’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for Jan. 13, 2023 at 1:30 p.m. He faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in the Montana State Prison and a maximum fine of $50,000, as well as a 10-year sentencing enhancement due to his use of a deadly weapon during the commission of the offense.
According to the plea agreement, prosecutors will recommend a sentence of 20 years in the Montana State Prison with five years suspended, as well as a condition that Ferguson complete the prison’s Intensive Treatment Unit program to address his alcohol dependence before he’s eligible for parole. Additionally, prosecutors will ask Judge Allison to suspend the 10-year enhancement, but attach it consecutively to Ferguson’s overall sentence.
Ferguson remains in custody at the Flathead County Detention Center.
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