CHOTEAU — Erin Elliott Holcomb, charged with the shooting death of 22-year old Trysten Fellers of Fairfield, was found guilty on Monday, March 7, 2022.
Fellers was shot and killed on May 14, 2021; witnesses say it started when Fellers tried to stop Holcomb from driving while intoxicated.
Fellers and several other people were at a residence southwest of Fairfield. Several people were drunk and wanted to drive themselves home.
Witnesses told deputies that Trysten took away the keys to one of their vehicles and planned to drive them home while his fiancee followed in their car to then give him a ride home, according to the Choteau Acantha.
Holcomb then reportedly got into his vehicle in the driver’s seat and refused to get out; Trysten called his father, “Sonny” Fellers, and asked him to come and help with the situation.
Court documents say that Sonny heard a gunshot and his son calling for help as he was approaching the scene.
On Monday, the prosecution made its closing argument against Holcomb. It included photo evidence and testimony from witnesses, including one who said he knew Holcomb had a gun and refused to put it away, and several others who heard the gunshots.
The defense said in closing arguments that Holcomb did not intend to kill Fellers.
After several hours of deliberation, the jury reached a unanimous guilty verdict on a charge of deliberate homicide.
Holcomb remains in custody at the Teton County Detention Center while he awaits sentencing, which is scheduled for April 12.
Montana Department of Justice attorneys Meghann Paddock and David Buchler prosecuted the case.
Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen said in a news release: “This was a senseless loss of a young man who was trying to do the right thing and stop a drunk driver from getting on the road. Our DOJ prosecutors did a great job bringing this criminal responsible to justice and winning this case. Rest assured; our prosecutors are committed to aggressively prosecuting dangerous criminals making sure they’re behind bars where they belong.”
In honor of Fellers, scholarships have been created at Fairfield High School and Augusta High School for students who plan to attend a trade or vo-tech school; click here for details.