WILLISTON (AP) - A man who once faced a murder conspiracy charge in a Williston-area killing now faces new charges after an incident outside the trial of another man charged in that case.
Ronald Gibbons, 28, faces six charges including two felonies related to alleged weapon, drug and vehicle offenses. He could face more than 11 years in prison if convicted. Court documents do not list an attorney for him, and a listed telephone number for him could not be found in Williston.
Authorities say Gibbons was stopped by a police officer April 15 after attending the trial of Issac Steen, who was convicted of hindering authorities who were investigating the slaying of Williston-area hobby rancher Jack Sjol a year ago.
According to an affidavit of probable cause, Gibbons had a loaded .45-caliber handgun and drug paraphernalia in his vehicle and was driving with a suspended license and expired registration, the Williston Herald reported. Gibbons did not have a license to carry a loaded weapon in his vehicle and is barred from possessing any weapons because of a 2011 felony drug conviction.
He also faces a misdemeanor criminal mischief charge for allegedly slamming his head against a patrol car window and damaging it after his arrest last week.
Prosecutors in March dropped the murder conspiracy charge against Gibbons, citing "prosecutorial discretion" and not elaborating on their reasons. They dropped a similar charge against another suspect last October.
Several others still face charges in Sjol's killing, including Ryan Stensaker, who is accused of killing him and is scheduled for trial in July.
Sjol's body was found in a garbage dump May 14, 2013, after his family reported him missing. Sjol had bullet wounds to his head, face and upper left arm. Prosecutors have not discussed a possible motive for his killing.