Human Trafficking Operation

On August 29 , 2018, the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, Bozeman Police Department and Homeland Security Investigations conducted a joint operation targeting Human Trafficking in Gallatin County.  The operation focused on the targeting of demand for illicit sexual contact.  Advertisements were posted on websites frequented for the purpose of facilitating sexual contacts.

During this operation, the advertisement received over 50 inquiries for various sexual acts.  On the day of the operation, numerous “dates” were scheduled. Customers, commonly referred to as “johns”, arrived at the agreed-upon location and met with an undercover law enforcement officer who posed as the trafficking victim.  Each suspect was taken into custody and booked into the Gallatin County Detention Center for the crime of prostitution.

The following individuals were booked into the Gallatin County Detention Center for prostitution:

  • Calvin F. Bender of Gallatin County
  •  Cody M. Umland of Gallatin County
  • Mark A. Steed of Gallatin County
  • Matthew J. Maus of Gallatin County
  • Shannon J. Rodman of Gallatin County
  • Travis M. Staker of Gallatin County
  • John C. Sanders of Lewis and Clark County

Gallatin County law enforcement will continue to focus their efforts to thwart trafficking throughout the county and state through joint investigative operations.  These operations focus on both the demand for such services and the human traffickers exploiting young men and women. Law enforcement can provide education to the public to help identify possible trafficking victims as well as prevention efforts with at-risk populations of younger men and women.

If you have information regarding trafficking operations or victims of human trafficking, you are encouraged to call the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Detective Division at 406-582-2121, the Bozeman Police Department at, or the Department of Homeland Security at 1-866-373-7888.  You may be eligible for a reward through Crime Stoppers for information that leads to the successful prosecution of criminal acts.

Drug Take Back Event


On Saturday, October 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Law and Justice Center in Bozeman, 615 South 16th,  the Missouri River Drug Task Force will be partnering with the Alcohol & Drug Services of Gallatin County, Community-Coalition On Drug Awareness, Bozeman Elks Lodge #46, the Montana Elks Drug Awareness Program, Community Medical Services, and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to offer the public its 16th opportunity in 7 years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

Last spring Americans turned in 474.5 tons (949,046 pounds) of prescription drugs at more than 5,800 sites operated by the DEA and over 4,600 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 15 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in almost 10 million pounds – more than 4,900 tons – of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows year after year that the majority of misused and abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including someone else’s medication being stolen from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines – flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash – both pose potential safety and health hazards.



For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the October 27 Take Back Day event, go to 

Year-round “Prescription Drug Take Back” boxes are in place at these locations: 


Authorized Collection Box Sites  

Belgrade Police Department*

91 E. Central Avenue

Belgrade, MT  59714

Bozeman Police Department*

121 N. Rouse Avenue

Bozeman, MT  59715

Highland Park Pharmacy

525 Highland Blvd.

Bozeman, MT  59715

Helena Police Department & Lewis and Clark Sheriff

221 Breckenridge

Helena, MT  59601

Law & Justice Center

615 South 16th

Bozeman, MT  59715

Manhattan Police Department*

120 W. Main

Manhattan, MT  59741

Park County Sheriff

414 E. Callender St., Suite 2

Livingston, MT  59047

Town of West Yellowstone*

124 Yellowstone Ave.

West Yellowstone, MT 59759

*Prescription Drug Take-Back box

funded by Elks National Beacon Grant,

and placed by Bozeman Elks Lodge #463.

James Anderson Recovered

Yesterday, on August 19, 2018 at around noon, we received a tip from a fisherman. Members of the Park and Gallatin County Sheriff’s Offices immediately responded to the scene and recovered the body of James Anderson from the Yellowstone River near Springdale.

We are thankful to be able to return James to his family. When such an unimaginable tragedy occurs, it reminds us of what really matters: family and friends. We have many thanks to share in the days to come but we are truly blessed to live in a place where people genuinely care about each other, even when strangers. Thank you all for the overwhelming support!

Sheriff Scott Hamilton, PCSO

Sheriff Brian Gootkin, GCSO

Photo Courtesy of Park County Sheriff’s Office

Its Hotter than it Looks

(Gallatin County, Mont.)

On Friday, August 10th, 2018, a Gallatin County Sheriff’s Deputy and members from the  Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue at Big Sky responded to a report of two lost hikers  without water from Minnesota on the Sky Rim Trail.  The hikers were able to contact emergency services on Big Horn Peak with their cell phone.  Search and Rescue members located the two hikers the following morning.  After hydrating, Search and Rescue members hiked out with the two men.

This rescue is a great example of what can happen while hiking in Montana. Hikers on a technical trail that did not anticipate the great distance that they would have to cross before they encountered a water source.  Sheriff Brian Gootkin would like to remind hikers to take extra water with you or fill your containers often in these hot summer months. Photos courtesy of the Sheriff’s Office


Two Rescues Sunday

(Gallatin County, Mont.) Sunday two rescues sent Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Deputies and volunteers to Hyalite and Portal Creek simultaneously. At 4:00 in the afternoon a report of a 67 year old having heart trouble on the Blackmore trail in Hyalite Canyon was recieved.  Because heart problems can be lethal a medical helicopter was dispatched to the area as well as SAR ground teams.  The Backcountry topography and weather in Gallatin County often prevents even helicopters from being able to reach people in distress so ground rescuers are always sent and often arrive before the helicopter.  In this case weather was an issue and the Reach Air Medical Helicopter had to stand off and wait for an opening in the weather.  Eventually they were able to land and transport him to Bozeman Health where his condition was reported as stable.  At about the same time Sheriff’s Deputies and Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Volunteers at Big Sky were sent to a 77 year old man with a broken ankle on the Hidden Lakes trail at Portal Creek.  When rescuers reached the trail head they found that other hikers had assisted him down the trail to the road.  He declined an ambulance and traveled with family members to the hospital.  In both cases there was no phone service available and someone had to walk out and report the incident.  These delays can means hours between when the injury occurs and when help can arrive.  Sheriff Gootkin said “Bad things can happen to people doing all the right things, so when out being active it is important to have a few things to help you survive.  Carry something to stay dry and warm, something to stop bleeding, something to drink and eat and go with a partner.”  Gallatin County Sheriff’s Deputies and Volunteers are also continuing to assist with the search of the Yellowstone River for James Anderson.



Sheriff’s Office Warns Of More Scams Circulating The Area

The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office has received a number of complaints from citizens regarding various phone scams that are circulating the area. If you have questions about a scam or you receive a call from one of these scammers, please call the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office at 406-582-2100.

One scam involves a caller informing people who answer that they have criminal charges pending and to send money for these charges to be dropped. The scammer informs the person to call a number and arrange payment.  These callers are intimidating, convincing, and persistent. Please do not respond to their requests. The number they are calling from or that they ask you to call back is 406-219-5919. This number goes to a voice mail indicating you have reached the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office. Do not call the number it is a bogus number.

The second type of scam involves callers impersonating someone from the Social Security Administration. They claim there is an issue with your social security card or your benefits. They ask for the last 4 digits of your SSN, your DOB, and other personal information. Do not give them any information. If you have questions, call the Social Security Administration directly or phone the Sheriff’s Office and ask about any scams. Do not call the number they give you.

Another scam involves callers impersonating a representative from the Dish Network stating there is an issue with the satellite communicating with your dish. The caller states you will have to pay them to have the issue fixed. Again, they ask for the last 4 digits of your SSN, your DOB, and other personal information. Do not give them any information. If you have questions, call the Dish Network # directly from the number on your statement, or phone the Sheriff’s Office and ask about any scams. Do not call the number they give you and do not give out any information.