- Associated Press - Friday, March 25, 2016

KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) - A 48-year-old Columbia Falls man has pleaded not guilty to stealing nearly $10,000 in electricity by using jumper cables to hook up to a cooperative’s transmission system.

Flathead County prosecutors filed the felony theft charge against Tim Wayne Bauer a year ago, but District Court officials say he was only arrested recently. He pleaded not guilty on March 3. The Hungry Horse News reports (https://bit.ly/1pBM1Bo ) Bauer’s trial is set for August.

Charging documents say Flathead Electric Co-op had shut off service to Bauer’s house in May 2012 due to nonpayment. In January 2015 a co-op employee spotted jumper cables being used to access power from the co-op’s transmission system.

Bauer’s public defender, Vicki Frazier, did not immediately return a phone call from The Associated Press on Friday seeking comment.

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Information from: Hungry Horse News, https://www.hungryhorsenews.com

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