Nicky Ouellet

Nicky is MTPR's Flathead-area reporter.

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. 

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

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.

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.

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.

Health care has emerged as a major driver of the Flathead Valley economy, researchers from the University of Montana and local experts said Tuesday. MTPR's Nicky Ouellet reports from the 2018 Economic Outlook Seminar in Kalispell.

Despite a smoke-filled summer, researchers from the University of Montana say that 2017 was actually a good year for the travel industry.

While almost 80 percent of businesses in northwestern Montana say they were affected by wildfires and smoke last summer, those same businesses raked in more than a billion dollars from out-of-state visitors.

The Flathead National Forest and Glacier National Park are updating the comprehensive river management plan for the three forks of the Flathead River.

The plan will describe the current status of the river, outline goals and desired conditions, determine user capacities and create a monitoring strategy and plan.

Starting next month, Flathead County will no longer accept plastics or steel can recycling. The change stems from market forces in China. 

Tribes in northwest Montana have pledged to uphold the Paris Climate Agreement, despite President Donald Trump backing out last year. The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes signed onto the We Are Still In campaign last week.