Assault allegations against Skyview students sent to Youth Court

2010-07-29T16:05:00Z 2010-09-22T08:27:54Z Assault allegations against Skyview students sent to Youth CourtGREG TUTTLE Of The Gazette Staff The Billings Gazette
July 29, 2010 4:05 pm  • 

One of five Skyview High students accused of assaulting another teenager in March during a large after-school fight has admitted to a felony charge in Yellowstone County Youth Court.

Beau Riley Burton, who turned 17 in May, admitted to a charge of aggravated assault and is scheduled to be sentenced Tuesday by Judge Gregory Todd. Burton and the other teenagers initially were charged as adults, but four of the cases have been transferred to Youth Court as part of an agreement with prosecutors.

Burton, Zachary Lee Lindsey, Blake Lee Bertolino, Cameron John Ostermiller and Armando Gonzales were charged with hitting and kicking a 17-year-old classmate outside his Ahoy Avenue home during a fight March 2 that drew about 40 teenage onlookers, police said.

Lindsey, who was 16 at the time of the incident, is accused of hitting the victim with a metal object. The victim suffered a serious head wound, according to police and prosecutors.

Lindsey appeared Monday during an initial appearance in Youth Court as part of an agreement with prosecutors that called for the dismissal of the adult charges in exchange for his admission to felony and misdemeanor charges in Youth Court. He is set to return to Youth Court on Aug. 24 for sentencing.

If Lindsey, now 17, doesn’t admit to the charges as a juvenile, the case will be refiled in District Court, prosecutors said in court records. He is charged with felony counts of assault with a weapon and aggravated assault, two counts of misdemeanor disorderly conduct and a single count of misdemeanor assault.

Ostermiller, 17, made a similar agreement with prosecutors. He is scheduled to make an initial appearance in Youth Court on Aug. 17 on a felony charge of assault with a weapon by accountability and an alternative felony charge of aggravated assault.

Bertolino, 16, appeared in Youth Court on July 14 and denied charges of felony assault with a weapon by accountability or aggravated assault. Judge Susan Watters has set a trial for Sept. 13.

Gonzalez’s case remains in District Court, but prosecutors said his case is also expected to be transferred to Youth Court.

Lindsey posted a $2,000 bond after his arraignment. The other teen defendants were released at arraignment without bond.

School officials said after the incident that five Skyview students involved in the fight were suspended, but they declined to name them.

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