A Missoula man, identified by police as Brandon Bryant, has been barred from attending any further Missoula City Council meetings after allegedly making threats to the personal safety of the council members.

Acting Missoula Police Chief Mike Colyer provided details.

“Last week we learned about a social media post that made some pretty explicit threats against member of the Missoula City Council,” said Colyer. “Like any type of threat, public or private, we take all those very seriously and we thoroughly investigate them, first for public safety, and second to try to get that person any support they may need to change their conduct, and that’s exactly what we did here.”

Colyer said a police officer made a personal visit to Bryant.

“Along with that contact about the post and what he did, we also verified that he had received a letter of trespass that was prepared by the City Attorney that had excluded him from attending city council meetings,” he said. “He said he received the letter and he understood the consequences of violating the conditions of that letter. We also explained to him that his post could be considered a criminal act and that we would be continuing our investigation. Lastly, we assessed if there were any needs that he had and offered to connect him with any resources that could help him work through whatever personal issues he had that he was taking out on the city council.”

Colyer said Bryant’s actions led to an adjournment of one city council meeting.

“This was the climax with him and it (the situation) had escalated with him and that’s when the decision was made by Mayor Engen, the council leadership and the City Attorney to exclude him from the public meetings,” he said. “If he violates that order he could be charged with criminal trespass. He could also be charged with other criminal offenses such as disorderly conduct, assault or intimidation. It would all depend on what happened at the meeting.”

Colyer said there has been and will continue to be a police presence at most city council meetings to prevent any further incidents.

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