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Accused killer Butler's transfer hearing postponed

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ARLEE — Nathan Butler’s court date has been moved to allow the defendant’s attorneys more time to gather information on the case. 

Butler, a 16-year-old Arlee resident, was charged in Lake County District Court with the stabbing death of his 51-year-old stepfather and with injuring his mother and another man Nov. 12.

The transfer hearing is now scheduled for Feb. 13 at 1:30 p.m., but the omnibus hearing is still set for Jan. 30. It is likely the omnibus hearing will be moved to a later date, as it cannot take place before the transfer hearing. 

The Lake County Attorney’s Office had no objection to moving the court date.

Butler is charged with deliberate homicide, attempted deliberate homicide, and assault with a weapon, all felonies. If convicted, deliberate homicide and attempted deliberate homicide carry maximum sentences of life in prison, and assault with a weapon carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000. 

As Lake County has no juvenile detention center, Butler remains in Missoula County Juvenile Detention on a $250,000 bond.

According to court documents, officers responded to a 911 call reporting a stabbing in Arlee around 5:30 a.m. on Nov. 12. Emergency personnel found Fisher, Butler’s stepfather, unresponsive and pronounced him dead at the scene. Butler’s mother, Dacia Vollin, had been stabbed several times and was transported to St. Patrick’s Hospital with life-threatening injuries. She remained in the hospital for several days before she was released.

A third stabbing victim, Theodore Perry, was also transported to St. Patrick’s Hospital. He was treated and released the same day. 

Butler was apprehended iin Arlee about two hours after the stabbing. According to Lake County Undersheriff Daniel Yonkin, Butler was found and arrested in a garage south of Fisher’s residence on Laughing Louis Adams Lane. Officers obtained consent from the structure’s owner and conducted two searches. The first search resulted in Butler’s arrest. 

According to court documents, the prosecution has named 27 witnesses. More may be added as they become available. 

Neither Undersheriff Daniel Yonkin nor Deputy County Attorney James Lapotka could comment as to whether or not drugs or alcohol were involved. 

 

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