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Badbear charged with 2016 murder in Big Horn County - KRTV News in Great Falls, Montana

Badbear charged with 2016 murder in Big Horn County

Posted: Dec 22, 2017 12:51 PM Updated:

(BILLINGS) More than a year after Freman Bends was found dead in Big Horn County, a Wyola woman has been charged with the murder.

Vernelle Badbear, 39 years old, was arraigned Thursday in U.S. District Court in Billings on a single count of second-degree murder.

Badbear is accused of murdering Bends, 38, who was killed at mile marker 4 on Highway 451 near Garryowen, according to court documents.

The murder happened on November 4, 2016.

Badbear was charged with the murder in Crow Tribal Court days after the crime, but it took a year for the case to be filed in federal court.

A motive for the murder has not been released.

Badbear's Facebook page shows her and Bends together with children, but their relationship is unclear.

The coroner would not comment on how long Bends had been dead before his body was found.

Badbear is in federal custody.


(NOVEMBER 15, 2016) A woman is charged in Crow Tribal Court with the murder of a man whose body was discovered Saturday near Garryowen, according to the tribal prosecutor.

Vernelle Badbear is charged in tribal court with deliberate homicide, according to Robert LaFountain, the tribal prosecutor.

Badbear is accused in the death of Freman Bends, 38, who is a member of the Crow Tribe.

Court documents detailing the charge against Badbear were not immediately available Tuesday.

Badbear's Facebook page shows her and Bends together with children.

Bends' body was found Saturday in an area about four miles south of Garryowen.

Big Horn County Coroner Terry Bullis did not comment on how long Bends had been dead.

The autopsy was completed Monday but Bullis did not release the cause of death.

It's unclear how Badbear is connected to Bends, but she is being held on $100,000 bond.

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