Yellowstone County, Montana
County Attorney
Frequently Asked Questions Contact Department

Where are you located and where do I park?

We are located at 217 North 27th Street in room 701 at the Yellowstone County Courthouse, which is the same place where you get your car license renewed. There is meter parking available in an adjacent parking lot accessible from 3rd Avenue North or 26th Street.


How do I report a crime & what happens afterwards?

If the crime is in progress, immediately call 911. If the crime has already occurred, the first step to take is to call the law enforcement agency that has jurisdiction where the alleged crime was committed. If you live in the city limits, you will contact the Billings Police Department at (406) 657-8200, or if outside the city limits within the county, contact the Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Department at (406) 256-2929. The law enforcement agency will ask you a series of questions to complete a report that will then be investigated. Once the initial investigation is complete, it will be forwarded to either the City Attorney’s Office or the County Attorney’s Office for review by a prosecutor who will then decide what charge(s), if any, will be charged.


I am a victim in a criminal case. Is the County Attorney’s Office my attorney?

The County Attorney’s Office represents Yellowstone County and the State of Montana in criminal cases and not individual persons. Victims and witnesses are consulted throughout a case and assisted through the court procedures related to a criminal prosecution. Their input is sought after and given utmost consideration, however they are not personally represented in the criminal case. Therefore, the office cannot give out any specific legal advice, but can direct victims and witnesses to community resources that may be helpful recovering from the crime committed against them. If you deem it necessary you have the right to obtain private counsel.


Is it up to me whether I want “charges pressed” against an individual?

Every attempt is made to thoroughly consult with and consider the wishes of a victim or witness in a criminal case but they do not “press” charges against an individual. Just as law enforcement has an obligation to investigate a crime, a prosecutor has an ethical obligation to work to uphold the criminal law. Ultimately, it is the Yellowstone County Attorney’s decision whether to prosecute a case, or not, and determine how the case can best be resolved. The same holds true if you want criminal charges “dropped” against an individual. The judge imposes the criminal penalty at sentencing.