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Former County Attorney Seeks Return To Office

Former County Attorney  Seeks Return To Office Former County Attorney  Seeks Return To Office

A familiar individual to the Roosevelt County Attorney’s office is seeking the head position for the office. Ralph J. “Jim” Patch is the third candidate to file for the county attorney election in Roosevelt County.

Patch feels he is the most qualified candidate for the office since he served for 21 years as the county’s attorney including 13 years at a part-time position and eight at a full-time status. He was re-elected as the county’s full-time attorney twice.

“I did a good job,” Patch said of his experience. “Like any county attorney now, the things we’re facing are unique.”

After graduating from Poplar High School, Patch went on to earn a degree at Seattle University. He also studied at St. Thomas Seminary, Carroll College and the U.S. Army’s Defense Language Institute. He received his law degree from Gonzaga University in 1980.

After graduating from Gonzaga, he worked at a private practice in Wolf Point for a year or so and then started his own private practice in the early 1980s. His experience also includes serving as Poplar’s city attorney and on the tribal appellate court. His wife worked in the Wolf Point school system for 30 years.

“I’ve kept up with things pretty well,” Patch said of current issues.

His community involvement includes being a member of the Wolf Point Lions Club, Elks Lodge and a church.

He noted he has a lot of experience dealing with drug crimes and poverty issues. Patch’s office had the first meth trial held in northeastern Montana. He noted that the drug problems continue as fentanyl is now even more deadly.

“Fortunately, we have a good sheriff’s office and the tribal police are excellent,” Patch said. “I’ve had a good working relationship with them.”

He said he decided to run for the position because of a concern about the current drug problem and that he is anxious to work with all departments. He noted that one of the county attorney’s duties is representing commissioners so they are aware of laws.

Other candidates for the position are current county attorney Theresa Diekhans and current deputy county attorney Thomas Bleicher.

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