Montana Supreme Court rules in favor of Missoula man prosecuted twice for same charge

The Montana Supreme Court ruled in favor of a man accusing Missoula County’s District Court of attempting to prosecute him twice for a criminal sexual assault charge stemming from a 2005 incident.

John T. Mosby was charged with felony sexual assault and misdemeanor indecent exposure in 2005 following an incident in the showers at a local gym. He was found unfit to proceed with the criminal justice process due to a developmental disability and the District Court dismissed the criminal case.

State prosecution then opened a civil case with a petition for an emergency commitment, according to Montana Supreme Court documents. He was sent to the Montana Developmental Center.

The county court filed petitions annually for Mosby’s re-commitment to the developmental center, to which he did not object. In 2013, he began requesting hearings for the re-commitments. He wanted to pursue community-based treatment.

In hearings in 2018, over Mosby’s objection, the Missoula District Court reinstated his criminal case and continued his civil case so he could stay at the Montana Developmental Center while the criminal case moved forward. Mosby argued the court did not have the authority to revive this dismissed charge from 2005.

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