NewsCrime and Courts


Driver accused of hitting a child who was getting off a bus wants mediation

Patricia Berliner in court on April 30, 2020
Posted at 3:09 PM, Oct 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 17:14:04-04

Patricia Berliner, charged with hitting and severely injuring a child who was getting off a school bus near Whitefish last year, requested on Wednesday that her jury trial be vacated.

Berliner’s attorney, Alisha Rapkoch, filed a joint motion to refer the case to mediation after consulting with Flathead County Attorney Travis Ahner.

Berliner agreed to the request via telephone, with Judge Dan Wilson granting approval.

Berliner, who was driving the vehicle that hit 6-year old Jordana Hubble in November 2019, pleaded not guilty on April 30 to a charge of felony criminal endangerment and was released on her own recognizance.

The charge filed carries a maximum term in the Montana State Prison of 10 years and a maximum fine of $50,000.

Court documents state Jordana “was reportedly thrown approximately 60 feet from the point of impact to where she came to rest in the ditch.”

Jordana was taken to Nexus Children’s Hospital in Houston in January to continue her recovery from the injuries she sustained in the incident. She returned home to Olney in August to continue treatment.