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Man gets 25 years behind bars for shooting friend

The man accused of shooting his friend in the leg before leading Fremont County authorities on a four-day Island Park manhunt was sentenced in 7th District Court in St. Anthony on Tuesday.

Jerrod Hillman, 34, of Madison County, was sentenced by Judge Greg Moeller to 25 years in prison, 10 fixed and 15 indeterminate, and a $5,000 fine.

Hillman entered an Alford plea in October to charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon enhancement. The Alford plea, in which Hillman asserted his innocence while pleading guilty, meant that he avoided a life sentence. This was Hillman’s third felony conviction.

Hillman’s friend, Monte Sommer of Parker, was shot in the leg with a 12-gauge shotgun Aug. 20 near Ponds Lodge. Police later found Hillman in an unoccupied rental cabin north of Last Chance on U.S. Highway 20 and had to be Tased before being taken into custody.

So far, Sommer has undergone six surgeries and faces at least two more at a cost of more than $180,000.

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