State v. GhostbearAnnotate this Case
After a jury trial, Appellant was convicted of sexual assault. Appellant moved that the district court sentence him to the misdemeanor penalty of a first conviction of sexual assault under Mont. Code Ann. 45-5-502(2)(a) rather than the felony penalty in section 45-5-502(3). The district court granted the motion, concluding that the misdemeanor penalty provided by section 45-5-502(2)(a) was the maximum sentence that could be imposed. The State appealed. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that the facts found by the jury constituted felony sexual assault under section 45-5-502(3), and therefore, the district court may proceed to sentencing under that provision.