The area of Montana directly south of the Big Beaver-Coronach area was one of the last counties in the U.S west to have regular full-time law enforcement. In fact Valley County was one of the most lawless areas in the U.S. Once the law moved into Valley County the outlaws moved north a few miles into Canada.
In the 1890’s the population on the Canadian side of the border was very sparse and the nearest Royal North West Mounted Police (RNWMP) post was at Wood Mountain about 90 miles to the west. (2-3 days by horse?) Patrols were infrequent due to the distance and scarcity of population. This was the ideal situation for the outlaws. Threats and intimidation made sure that the law abiding citizens
of the area turned a blind eye to the activities of the outlaws and in some cases the locals were directly involved.