Crime & Courts

August 22, 2014

Former Kansas man sentenced to life in prison for sex crime

A 50-year-old man was sentenced to life in prison Friday under Jessica’s Law for aggravated criminal sodomy of a child under 14 years old. Steve Butler was found guilty in June.

A 50-year-old man was sentenced to life in prison Friday under Jessica’s Law for aggravated criminal sodomy of a child under 14 years old, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said in a news release.

Steven P. Butler, a former resident of Independence who now lives in Joplin, Mo., will not be eligible for parole for at least 25 years, the release said. He was found guilty of the charge in June and was sentenced by Judge F. William Cullins in Montgomery County District Court.

Under Kansas law, the standard sentence for people convicted of a Jessica’s Law crime is life in prison without parole eligibility for 25 years. The law covers certain sex offenses involving adult perpetrators and victims younger than 14, including rape, aggravated indecent liberties, aggravated criminal sodomy and aggravated human trafficking.

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation investigated the case. Amy Hanley and Kelly McPherron of Schmidt’s office prosecuted the case, the release said.

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