MTPR

Nicky Ouellet

Flathead Valley Reporter

Nicky is MTPR's Flathead-area reporter. Nicky returns to the Flathead Valley after wrapping up her graduate studies at the University of Montana's environmental science journalism program.

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George Wilcoxen at his sentencing in January
Nicky Ouellet

This story was updated at 9:30 am on Feb. 14, 2018 with the following editor's note: As we reported previously, George Wilcoxen was sentenced after entering an Alford plea, an Alford plea allows him to maintain his innocence while acknowledging that the prosecution likely had enough evidence for a jury to convict him. Wilcoxsen maintains that he is innocent. 

When a Bigfork man was sentenced last month for sexually assaulting a six-year-old child, the victim’s mother thought that would be the last time she’d see him for a while. We’re not using her name to protect the victim’s identity.

"It was my impression right up until the very last minute that would for sure be a prison sentence," she said.

George Wilcoxen, age 73, was sentenced, but not to prison. 

Dion Hinchcliff / Flickr

Glacier Park International Airport in Kalispell will offer a week-long TSA Pre-Check enrollment pop-up event at the end of February.

Olympian Hilary Lindh speaks during the Whitefish Chamber of Commerce Awards Gala, Feb. 7, 2018.
Nicky Ouellet

As the Olympic Games kick off today in Pyeongchang, South Korea, a three-time Olympic downhill skier who now lives in Whitefish shares her race memories and lessons learned.

A team of volunteers rallied to get thousands of pounds of potatoes and bread to Heart Butte after a severe storm stranded the community on New Year's Day.
Courtesy Kathryn Hayes

Hunger is a chronic problem for many families on the Blackfeet Reservation. Grocery stores are few and far between, and the poverty rate is around 40 percent.

Like in any rural area, fresh food especially is expensive. It takes a lot of hours in the car or on the phone to access public assistance programs. But when a severe winter storm blew in around New Year's Eve, the chronic hunger issue became an acute crisis.

House for sale.
(PD)

Whitefish is setting the pace for growth in home prices in northwest Montana, and economists say housing markets in Flathead County are looking healthy. MTPR's Nicky Ouellet reports from the 2018 Economic Outlook Seminar in Kalispell.

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