Billings Police Still Searching For Suspect in Fatal Shooting at Lee’s Saloon
Police in Billings still have not arrested a suspect in connection with the shooting that left one person dead and two others injured at Lee’s Saloon on April 6. The 24-year-old man killed in the shooting has been identified as Shane Nez Perce. The names of the other victims have not been released.
A 28-year-old man was hospitalized and treated for non-life-threatening injuries and another 24-year-old man was also injured but did not receive medical treatment. Perce was hospitalized, where he later died.
Officers responded to reports of a shooting at the bar at 530 South 27th Street at around 2 a.m. on Saturday, April 6.
Few details have been released by the Billings Police Department. It is not clear if this shooting took place inside or outside of the bar. An investigation is ongoing and the department has asked the public for help with identifying a suspect. On April 19, the department made a social media post announcing that “persons of interest have been identified.”
History of Violence at Lee’s Saloon
Lee’s Saloon has a recent history of other violent incidents.
In January of this year, a man was stabbed in the abdomen at the bar and hospitalized.
In 2015, 22-year-old Jamie Jo Broken Rope was convicted of fatally stabbing another woman outside of Lee’s Saloon. She was sentenced to 55 years in prison.
Also in 2015, a man brought a gun into the bar and ordered an ex-girlfriend into a nearby vehicle, where he beat her.
Are Bar Owners Liable for Violence on Their Properties?
Crime victim attorney Brian Kent has offered to share some thoughts on bar owner liability for shootings, stabbings, and other violent incidents on their properties:
The owners of bars, nightclubs, and other businesses are responsible for keeping their properties secure and their customers and employees safe from the preventable dangers, including violent crime. Security measures like guards, metal detectors, and searches of customers upon entry can help reduce the risk of shootings and stabbings. But sometimes, the failure to provide adequate security results in a violent crime that may have been preventable.
In order for a bar owner to be considered liable for a shooting, the victims and their attorneys must establish that the shooting was reasonably foreseeable. This may be the case if the bar had a prior history of violent incidents. If there was a history of violence and the bar owner failed to have any security measures in place to reduce the risk of future incidents, the victims and their families could have grounds for a lawsuit.
Each bar shooting case is unique and establishing bar owner liability depends on the specific circumstances of the case. If you or someone you love has recently become the victim of a bar shooting, you can better understand your family’s legal options by speaking with an experienced crime victim lawyer.
Local News Coverage from KTVQ News in Montana
Lee’s Saloon in Billings, MT
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