Violent Yellowstone National Park Tourist Receives His Sentence
You know those stories we occasionally hear about tourists trying to feed the bears in Yellowstone National Park?
We are imagining that some of the tourists who were present during an ugly hotel incident probably wanted to feed this guy to the bears. And what must have been a very disturbing and frightening scene has resulted in a prison sentence and fines for a California man.
Associated Press reports that Benjamin Bagala of Santa Rosa, California, has pleaded guilty to a number of charges stemming from his actions at a Yellowstone National Park hotel this past fall.
Lake Yellowstone Hotel staff and guests witnessed Mr. Bagala go into an apparent alcohol-induced rage, including breaking objects, harassing patrons and threatening hotel security personnel. But his violent actions didn't end there.
Local law enforcement was called to the scene, where Mr. Bagala continued to be confrontational. He reportedly attacked the officer, who eventually subdued him with a taser. He appeared to have numerous injuries, so two more officers were called to the scene in order to restrain him while riding in an ambulance to a nearby hospital. And no, the violent actions didn't end there, either.
Mr. Bagala broke free from his restraints and began attacking one of the accompanying officers. The ambulance driver pulled over and finally the three officers were able to subdue him.
Mr. Bagala's charges include three counts of assaulting, resisting or impeding officers and employees and one count of depredation against property of the United States. He was sentenced to 9 months in prison. He also received one year's supervised release with conditions that include a ban from Yellowstone National Park. He also must pay restitution of approximately $2,865.00 to Lake Yellowstone Hotel for the damage he did there.
Here's hoping that the alcohol treatment requirements of the sentence have a positive impact.
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