Helena man sentenced to 40 years in pistol-whipping death
Jul. 20, 2017
HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A 19-year-old Montana man who shot his friend to death while pistol-whipping someone else has been sentenced to 80 years in Montana State Prison, with 40 years suspended.
Austin Kroll-McLaughlin, of Helena, was sentenced Thursday on his earlier guilty plea to deliberate homicide.
The case involved the July 7, 2016, shooting death of 20-year-old Ryan Eakin.
The Independent Record reports (http://bit.ly/2vGmRVH ) that in an emotional apology to the Eakin family, Kroll-McLaughlin described the horror and shock he experienced when he realized that he had shot his friend. He acknowledged his own careless actions were to blame for the death of their son.
Kroll-McLaughlin was also sentenced Thursday to 10 years in prison for an unrelated burglary charge from March 2015. That sentence will run concurrently with the deliberate homicide sentence.
Information from: Independent Record, http://www.helenair.com