by Travis Mateer
Keeping the public safe from unstable psychos like Josh Paniagua is the main job of a County Attorney like Kirsten Pabst, but Pabst’s office didn’t see fit to properly charge Paniagua with murder after he stabbed Ben Mousso 4 times in a drug rip gone bad at the beginning of last year.
Here’s Pabst in July of 2020 explaining the “self-defense decision” she made regarding this killer:
In court documents, investigators say Mousso and two others lured Paniagua to the casino with a meth-for-marijuana trade, but they didn’t have meth.
Prosecutors say they decided to rob Paniagua. Paniagua said Mousso hit him “three to four times” in the head in one version and “seven to eight” in another.
Paniagua admitted he stabbed Mousso four times.
The charging document claims, while Paniagua’s conflicting story made investigators question the “appropriateness of his actions and the level of force he used in response to Mousso’s attack … Paniagua maintained he ‘had no choice in the stabbing.’”
“We are looking at the reasonable person standard,” said Pabst.
Montana law specifically allows someone, in this case Paniagua, to use force, including deadly force, to prevent a robbery.
Since Josh Paniagua wasn’t properly charged in this incident, he was free to continue doing psychotic things, like preparing to save his devil-possessed mother, Traci, with his homemade torture chamber:
Court documents say Traci reported to a neighbor and police that Joshua thought she was “possessed by the devil” and that he “had to get the demons out of her” in a homemade “torture chamber” in their home.
Joshua then reportedly attempted to assault her with a hammer before Traci escaped to a neighbor’s house and called the police.
When police arrived at the scene, Joshua had barricaded himself inside the home before coming out once and then going back inside.
Paniagua continued to do so for several hours until police were able to extricate him.
This incident happened in June, about six months after Josh stabbed Ben Mousso to death in a public bathroom. Sort of puts Pabst’s July comments–defending her office’s NON-action in January–in a different light, doesn’t it.
Now, as the end of 2021 draws to an end, Paniagua is finally being sentenced, but for WHAT crime? I guess you can’t expect those kind of details from our local reporting. Here’s what WAS reported about Paniagua’s sentencing:
“She sentenced Mr. Paniagua to 10 years active with the Department of Public Health and Human Services, which is primarily focused on mental health treatment, and then followed that up with another five years active Department of Corrections placement, which is focused primarily on substance abuse,” said Bloom. “Then she followed that up with another 10 years on probation. So ultimately, Mr. Paniagua will do 15 years in custody, followed by another 10 years of supervised probation.”
In the article, after some of the victim statements were read, the prosecuting attorney for the County, Mac Bloom, had this to say:
“It was probably the most difficult case I’ve worked in my eight year career,” he said. “The work that law enforcement put into this and that our office put into this to try to get to the right answer and to get to the right solution was incredible. We put a lot of time into this case, and we wanted to make sure that we got it right because we wanted justice to be done. I know that the families of the deceased feel like that was not the case here and my heart breaks for them. They lost their son and we can never bring him back, and really, my heart goes out to them for that tragedy. We just had to do the best we could to evaluate it objectively and under the laws of the state of Montana.”
Yes, Missoula County Attorneys are well known for their ability to objectively evaluate and prosecute dangerous people, people like that VERY DANGEROUS drone whistleblower, Brandon Bryant, who faced similar time in custody for using WORDS to create feelings of NON-SAFETY for politically important people, like council member Gwen Jones.
Here’s a post I wrote in February of 2020, titled If Brandon Bryant Had Killed A Homeless Person Instead Of Using Threatening Language Would He Still Be Sitting In Jail? In this post I juxtapose the felony charges Bryant faced for using threatening language, while the alleged assailant of Sean Stevenson, Johnny Lee Perry, was allowed to walk without ANY charges after allegedly assaulting Sean at the Poverello Center on January 3rd, 2020.
I have ZERO FAITH in our County Attorney’s office as long as Kirsten Pabst is leading it. In my opinion, Pabst is an important cog in a corrupt political machine that has been running roughshod over this community for years, protecting the politically connected from the consequences of their actions, while bringing the full weight of the law upon those without political friends to protect them.
Pretty soon, the power dynamics running this town will be on FULL DISPLAY.