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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Montana
Jesse Laslovich, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Thursday, June 22, 2023

Hardin Felon Sentenced to Prison for Illegal Possession of Gun

BILLINGS — A Hardin man with felony convictions was sentenced today to 21 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, after law enforcement found a firearm in a stolen truck he was driving during a pursuit that began near Billings and ended on the Crow Indian Reservation, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said today.

Casey Wallace Leider, 32, pleaded guilty in February to felon in possession of a firearm.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided. The federal sentence is in addition to a 16-month sentence the Crow Tribal Court imposed on Leider for conviction for conduct from the same incident.

In court documents, the government alleged that in July 2021, Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Office deputies pursued a stolen Ford F-350 truck driven by Leider from the Lockwood area and onto the Crow Indian Reservation. The Bureau of Indian Affairs authorized the deputies to continue the chase onto the reservation. The pursuit involved police vehicles and a helicopter. The pursuit eventually ended near Pryor when the truck left the roadway and broke down in a field. Law enforcement arrested Leider, who told a deputy that he was high. Inside the truck was a pistol in plain sight. Leider had two felony convictions and was prohibited possessing firearms.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lori Harper Suek prosecuted the case. The Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Office conducted the investigation.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

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