Roundup man receives 40-year sentence for sexual abuse of two young girls
HELENA – A Roundup man who previously pleaded guilty in Musselshell County District Court to two counts of felony sexual assault for abuse that occurred of two victims when they were under the age of 16 years of age was sentenced to prison Tuesday for a total of 40 years, Attorney General Austin Knudsen announced today.
Ward Lamar Mason, 59, admitted in May to sexually assaulting two young girls multiple times. One victim said Mason serially sexually abused her from the age of six years old to 14 years old, and the other said she was sexually abused between the ages of 13 to 18. Mason pleaded guilty to sexually abusing both victims between the ages of 12 and 14.
Judge Randal Spaulding sentenced Mason to the Montana State Prison for a total of 40 years with a parole restriction of 20 years. Mason will be 79 years old when he becomes eligible for parole, and if granted parole at that time, will be under the supervision of the Department of Corrections until he is 99 years old.
The case was resolved short of trial via an open plea agreement, meaning both the State and Mason recommended their own sentences at the hearing before the Musselshell District Court. The State recommended a total of 50 years in the Montana State Prison with the statutory parole restriction of quarter time, or 12.5 years. Mason recommended 20 years with 16 suspended for a total of four years to serve in prison. An aggravating factor the Court took into consideration was Mason continuously victim blamed throughout the psychosexual evaluation and pre-sentence investigation report.
Assistant Attorney General Jordan P. Salo prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the Musselshell County Sheriff’s Department, Billings Police Department, and Salem Police Department.