BOZEMAN, Mont. — A southwestern Montana police officer has pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor charge for a reported confrontation with his wife last weekend.

The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reports ( ) the Aug. 18 arrest of 34-year-old Nathanael Gaukler came just three weeks after another Bozeman police officer killed his wife and then himself.

Gaukler pleaded not guilty Monday to partner or family member assault and posted $500 bail.

Court records say Gaukler told investigators that the two had been fighting and he acknowledged telling her: “Don’t you dare go to sleep.” He also told investigators that he had negligently shot a firearm in his house about a month earlier.

Police Chief Steve Crawford says Gaukler is on leave. He has served as a school resource officer for the past two of his eight years on the force.

Information from: Bozeman Daily Chronicle,

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.