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Body slam lands Missoula man with felony assault charge

Body slam lands Missoula man with felony assault charge

Cameron Mattson

Cameron Mattson

A 22-year-old man was arrested downtown Saturday after allegedly slamming another man who had been asking for cigarettes into the concrete. 

Cameron Hunter Mattson is charged with aggravated assault — a felony carrying a maximum 20-year prison sentence — and obstructing a peace officer, a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of six months in the county jail. 

Prosecutors said in charging documents filed against Mattson in Missoula County Justice Court on Monday that a Missoula police officer patrolling the downtown area had been flagged down and advised of an assault near the parking garage on Ryman Street. The officer found a man unconscious and lying on his back near the entrance of the parking garage. According to charging documents, the officer spotted a man who started running up the parking garage after noticing the officer. Several people at the scene told the officer the man who was running had committed the assault, according to court filings. 

The man, later identified as Mattson, was apprehended in the alley north of the parking garage. According to charging documents, Mattson repeatedly asked "Is the kid OK?," after his arrest.

The officer went to Providence St. Patrick Hospital, but the victim was unable to recall what happened. The officer noted a large bump and abrasion on the left side of his head, according to court documents. The man also described pain in his left shoulder. 

Officers spoke with a man who said he had witnessed the assault. That witness said the victim had been asking people for cigarettes, extending the request to one group of men several times, according to charging documents. The witness said as the victim was engaged with two other men, Mattson approached him from behind, wrapped his arms around the victim's torso and slammed him on his head, according to court documents. Another witness reportedly corroborated the first witness' story.

Two other men aside from Mattson were initially charged with accountability for the assault, although the Missoula County Attorney's chief criminal prosecutor, Matt Jennings, told the Missoulian on Wednesday that new evidence did not support those charges. The county attorney's office filed a motion to dismiss those cases Wednesday, Jennings said. 

Mattson was released from the county jail on Monday. His next hearing was scheduled for Aug. 10 in Missoula County District Court.

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