Montana Official Arrested In Great Falls And Accused Witness Tampering
Public Service Commissioner Randy Pinocci was taken into custody on Friday in Cascade County on felony witness tampering charges.
The arrest is an extension of a previous disorderly conduct charge that stemmed from an altercation in July.
Pinocci was involved in a dispute over a security deposit with one of his property tenants.
Law enforcement was called to the scene, resulting in both parties being charged with disorderly conduct.
However, Pinocci failed to appear for his court hearing, leading to issuing a warrant for his arrest.
During a press conference, Cascade County Sheriff Jesse Slaughter elaborated on the new tampering charges, explaining that they arose from an attempt by Pinocci to persuade a witness to retract their previous statements regarding the initial charge.
According to Slaughter, a text message in evidence suggests that Pinocci tried to leverage the witness's cooperation to maintain their relationship, stating, "For us to continue this relationship, you need to recant your testimony with the Sheriff's Office."
Detectives also uncovered a phone conversation in which similar statements were made to another witness regarding the retraction of their statements.
Montana Public Service Commission
Randy Pinocci currently serves as the representative for District 1 on the Montana Public Service Commission, a regulatory body overseeing the state's largest utilities, including electric, natural gas, water, wastewater, and legacy telecommunication companies.
Pinocci was apprehended on the morning of October 13, with a bond set at $2,500, and the investigation into these charges is ongoing.
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