NewsCrime Watch


Butte man sentenced to 6 years in prison for meth, firearms found in truck

Posted at 9:18 AM, Mar 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-21 11:42:49-04
Joseph Patrick Walsh (Montana Department of Corrections photo)

MISSOULA – A Butte man who admitted to having methamphetamine and firearms in his pickup truck after a police officer found him asleep and slumped over the steering wheel while the vehicle was running was sentenced to prison on Wednesday.

Chief U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen sentenced Joseph Patrick Walsh, 40, to 72 months and one day in prison, to run concurrent to a state sentence, and to five years of supervised release, according to a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Montana.

Walsh pleaded guilty in October to possession with intent to distribute meth and to possession of firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

Walsh was indicted after a Manhattan Police Department officer on Feb. 11, 2018 conducted a welfare check on a suspicious pickup truck that was parked in Manhattan, the press release states. The officer found the truck running with Walsh slumped over the steering wheel and asleep.

The officer woke up Walsh, who said he hadn’t been drinking but was a recovering alcoholic and drug addict.

Walsh acknowledged there was marijuana and meth in the center console. He opened the console and handed the officer two 9mm semi-automatic pistols and a glove, which contained 53.2 grams of pure meth. Fifty-three grams of meth is the equivalent of about 424 doses.