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Fire Marshal Charged after Intoxicated Man Dies

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GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) — The Great Falls fire marshal is charged with negligent endangerment after an investigation found he was pushing an intoxicated bar patron home in a chair with casters on it when the man was thrown from the chair and landed face-first on the sidewalk, causing a fatal head injury.

Doug Bennyhoff also is charged for obstructing a police officer. He is scheduled to appear in Justice Court on Feb. 4.

The man, Orville “Lee” Jones, was injured Sept. 15 and died six days later.

Court records say after Jones fell, Bennyhoff tried to pick him up and put him back in the chair. Eventually Bennyhoff and others took Jones up to his apartment.

A witness said Bennyhoff called 911, but sought only non-emergency medical response and lied to responders about how Jones was injured.

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