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Convicted rapist heading to prison

| September 29, 2021 11:00 AM

By SCOTT SHINDLEDECKER

For the Hungry Horse News

Convicted rapist Kaleb James Arends had more than one opportunity at reform, but after his latest probation violation he will now spend time in prison.

Arends, 21, of Kalispell and formerly of Columbia Falls, recently was sentenced to a 10-year term in the Montana Department of Corrections. Flathead County District Court Judge Heidi Ulbricht recommended Arends be placed in a Connections Corrections facility that offers programs designed to assist certain adult offenders in reforming their criminal behavior.

Arends was jailed at the Flathead County Detention Center while he waits for an opening at the state facility.

Arends was accused of raping a teenage girl while she slept at a drinking party in January 2018. According to charging documents, a detective spoke to a witness, who said she was at the party where people were drinking alcohol. She said her friend, the victim, was intoxicated, and that she saw Arends raping the victim while she was either asleep or passed out.

According to the court document, the friend said Arends told her to “cover up” for him, so that he wouldn’t get in trouble.

Arends entered an Alford plea in 2018 to one count of sexual intercourse without consent and received a six-year deferred sentence from Judge Ulbricht in May 2018.

But two years later, Arends was accused of violating his probation after attending a party on April 19, 2020, where he associated with several juveniles, including a 14-year-old girl, a 16-year-old girl, three 17-year-old girls and four boys ages 17 and under. One of Arends’ probation conditions included him not having contact with minors.

Deputies also cited Arends for being a minor in possession of alcohol and for taking a breath test that showed he had a blood alcohol level of .032, four times the legal limit. Another condition of his probation was that Arends not consume alcohol.

The fourth alleged violation dealt with Arends missing several court-mandated sex offender treatment classes.

On June 26, 2021, the county Sheriff’s Office received a complaint that Arends had sex with a 16-year-old girl after meeting him at a family reunion the previous day.

After deputies saw a social media video, they spoke with Arends, who allegedly said he was in contact with the girl.