Huntley High arson defendant admits probation violations

2010-04-20T17:33:00Z Huntley High arson defendant admits probation violations GREG TUTTLE Of The Gazette Staff The Billings Gazette
April 20, 2010 5:33 pm  • 

A teenager who last year received a suspended sentence for her role in the 2008 arson fire that destroyed Huntley Project High School was back in court Tuesday.

Katie Jo Parshall, 16, appeared in Youth Court before Judge Gregory Todd and admitted violating several conditions of her suspended sentence, including failing to make restitution payments and smoking marijuana.

Todd ordered the girl held in youth detention on a $5,000 bond until a sentencing hearing on May 3. Prosecutors said they will ask that Parshall be sent to the Riverside Youth Correctional Facility in Boulder, a state detention center for girls.

Parshall is one of four teenagers who were charged for the break-ins and arson fire Sept. 18, 2008, that razed the school, displacing hundreds of students and teachers and causing an estimated loss of $9 million.

Three of the teens, including Parshall, pleaded guilty and were sentenced. Arson and burglary charges against a fourth teen, Michael Victoria III, are pending and a District Court trial is scheduled next month.

Parshall appeared for sentencing in Youth Court on April 7, 2009. She had admitted to two counts of felony burglary. Todd sentenced Parshall to the custody of the state Department of Corrections until age 18, with placement at the youth detention center for girls. The placement was suspended on condition that Parshall successfully complete one year of probation.

Parshall also was ordered to pay restitution of at least $100 a month or 50 percent of her income, whichever was greater, for seven years.

Parshall was arrested last week on allegations by her probation officer that she violated numerous conditions of her suspended sentence. Parshall admitted Tuesday to some of the violations, including smoking marijuana on several occasions. She also admitted that she failed to make any restitution payments since last August, and that she refused to perform community service in lieu of restitution.

Parshall has paid a total of $185 toward restitution, according to a report by her probation officer. She did earn $738 toward restitution by performing some community service work before she declined to continue in that program, the report states.

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