Yellowstone: Man Sentenced for Assault & Kidnapping in Park

Yellowstone: Man Sentenced for Assault & Kidnapping Inside the Park

Written by on April 21, 2022

A former Yellowstone contractor will serve nearly four years in prison after assaulting and kidnapping someone within the national park’s boundaries – an automatic federal felony.

On April 18, Federal District Court Judge Nancy D. Freudenthal sentenced  40-year-old Gregory Michael Samuel Toth for his actions on Oct. 1, 2021.  He was sentenced to 44 months of imprisonment and three years of supervised release, served concurrently to a state sentence, and ordered to pay a $500 fine and a $100 assessment.

Gregory Toth violently assaulted and actively kidnapped a friend and coworker, following a history of similar incidents.

Details are scant, but according to the U.S. District Attorney’s Office, Toth lived in a contractor trailer at the Fishing Bridge RV Park that October. Toth “unlawfully committed an assault with the intent to commit a kidnapping” at that location while residing in the park.

The Cowboy State Daily has more information on the incident. The victim was a man and 30-year friend Toth lived and worked within Yellowstone. During the incident, the victim was thrown down, choked, and had a knife held to his neck while being told he would be killed.

Toth then attempted to get the victim in his truck. Fortunately,  another vehicle was traveling on the Grand Loop Road and stopped to assist the victim. Toth was arrested “in Park County” soon after.

The impetus of the crime was Toth’s belief that the victim was having an affair with his ex-girlfriend – someone the victim had never met.

Toth was later found to have alcohol and marijuana in his system. Furthermore, he had been previously incarcerated – for assaulting and kidnapping an ex-girlfriend.

Toth’s first mistake was threatening the well-being of another person – his second mistake was doing it inside Yellowstone.

“Assault is a serious crime regardless of the location, but when it occurs in a national park, it becomes a federal felony,” said United States Attorney Bob Murray. “This individual is now serving close to four years in federal prison due to an unnecessary assault on an innocent
individual. This type of conviction would not have been possible without the collaborative efforts of our prosecuting attorney and the investigative work of the National Park Service.”

Even with four years in prison, Toth got off easy. The felony charges he incurred could have meant life in prison, five years of supervised release, and $520,000 in fines.

This crime was investigated by National Park Service special agents and Yellowstone National Park law enforcement officers. Michael J. Elmore prosecuted the case.

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