Crime

Meridian man reaches plea deal in lewd conduct case

Robert Butterfield
Robert Butterfield

A 28-year-old Meridian man who was accused of having inappropriate contact with a 15-year-old girl during a party at his house last spring reached a plea deal last week with prosecutors.

Robert James Butterfield pleaded guilty Nov. 22 to one charge of felony injury to a child, reduced from a charge of lewd conduct with a child under 16, according to court records.

He was also charged with felony manufacture or delivery of a controlled substance and misdemeanor dispensing alcohol to a minor, but those charges will be dismissed as part of the plea deal, court records show.

Court records show sentencing is set for Jan. 17.

The Canyon County Prosecutor’s Office was the special prosecutor on the case, court records show. Attorney Ransom Bailey, who works for the Ada County Public Defenders Office, is representing Butterfield. Bailey did not return a call for comment Tuesday.

Tracy Basterrechea, deputy chief of the Meridian police, told the Statesman in May that the charges stemmed from an investigation that began on April 12, when Butterfield’s neighbors asked police to make a welfare check at his residence in the 1400 block of Santa Rosa Place in Meridian. Some of those at the residence told police that a girl was possibly the victim of a crime, and investigators later interviewed her.

At the felony level, injury to a child is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

Katy Moeller: 208-377-6413, @KatyMoeller

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