BILLINGS — A Rosebud man who admitted shooting a man he believed had shorted him in a $20 methamphetamine deal was sentenced today to five years in prison and three years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.
Anthony Shoulderblade, 33, pleaded guilty on June 4 to assault with a dangerous weapon.
U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided.
The prosecution said in court documents filed in the case that on Dec. 21, 2018, a Bureau of Indian Affairs officer responded to a report of a male who had been shot in the Muddy Cluster subdivision on the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation. Witnesses said Shoulderblade had shot the victim, who was being transported to Lame Deer in a Nissan. The officer located the Nissan and assisted the victim, who had a gunshot wound about the size of a 9mm bullet in his abdomen. The Nissan’s driver told the officer that Shoulderblade had shot the victim and then fled. The victim ultimately was transported to a Billings hospital for treatment.
The victim told an investigator that he was driving with two others when someone flashed him down. He said he pulled over, exited his car and went to the passenger side of the vehicle, where Shoulderblade was seated. The victim said he was speaking with Shoulderblade when he suddenly felt his leg taken out from underneath him. The victim said he had been shot with what he believed was a 9mm handgun.
About two months later, law enforcement located Shoulderblade, who admitted he shot the victim after the victim had shorted him in a drug transaction. Shoulderblade said he had purchased $20 worth of meth from the victim but received only $10 worth of product.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Karla Painter prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI.