Violent offenses in Montana are defined by § 46-23-502(13), MCA, and include deliberate homicide, mitigated deliberate homicide, aggravated assault, partner or family member assault (PFMA) (3rd offense), assault on a peace officer, assault on a minor, assault with a weapon, strangulation, kidnapping, robbery, arson, and operation of an unlawful clandestine laboratory. Most violent offenses carry mandatory minimum sentences and require registration as a violent offender upon conviction. Becoming a convicted violent offender and having to register will disadvantage you for life. Montana has very good self-defense laws that require the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you did not act with justifiable use of force. You should give notice of the affirmative defense of justifiable use of force whenever applicable. An exhaustive investigation should be done into the alleged victim’s background and prior acts, as such information can be relevant to the type or degree of force used in self-defense.