The Helena man accused of being at fault in the Oct. 21 shooting death of Dr. Eugene "Buzz" Walton II was arraigned in Lewis and Clark County's Justice Court on Monday afternoon.
Gregg Robert Trude, 62, is being charged with negligent homicide and tampering with physical evidence. If convicted, Trude could face up to 30 years in prison and $100,000 in fines.
Trude was booked and released after his appearance. He is currently on Pretrial Services and will have to maintain weekly contact with his attorney, appear in court when called and remain law-abiding, all standard orders for release.
Trude is not allowed to leave the state without permission from the court and is not allowed to possess firearms or weapons.
Trude is the executive director for Montana Right to Life. His LinkedIn profile and a legislative candidate survey say he is a firearms safety instructor. He lost in the Republican primary for a state House seat representing District 75 south of Helena.
Authorities say Walton, 48, died after he was hit by a round discharged from a hunting rifle in Helena's old Kmart parking lot. He and another man had just returned from a hunting trip.
Officials have declined to say who owned the gun or who was handling it when it discharged.
First responders provided medical aid on the scene and then transported Walton to St. Peter's Health, where he died a short time later.
Walton was a doctor at Performance Injury Care & Sports Medicine and had previously worked as an athletics physician for Mercer University, Montana State University Billings and Rocky Mountain College. He leaves behind a wife and two daughters.
The Independent Record has filed a request for the police report that led to the charges against Trude.