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SON SAYS HE HELPED BURN DAD’S REMAINS

SHARE SON SAYS HE HELPED BURN DAD’S REMAINS

Fourteen-year-old Timmy Butler has admitted in Youth Court that he helped his mother cut up and burn his murdered father's body last January.

Some of the remains ultimately were found in an outhouse.District Judge John Henson asked Butler on Thursday if he "altered physical evidence" to help his mother, Donna, cover up the murder allegedly committed by his sister, Sarah. Timmy Butler replied, "yes."

Tim Butler was shot in the head on Jan. 15 as he slept in a cabin on the family's property near Alberton.

Sarah Butler, 15, has admitted shooting her father, court records state. The day after the shooting, Donna and Timmy dragged Tim Butler's body to a slash pile and burned it.

In a statement to Missoula County sheriff's detectives, Donna Butler said Timmy later cut up the remains with a meat saw and then burned it again in a wood stove and what was left went into the outhouse. Portions of the body were recovered from the toilet during a Feb. 21 search.

Timmy, Sarah and Donna Butler were arrested that day - some 48 hours after two neighbor boys told detectives that Sarah and Timmy had told them about the murder.

Donna Butler was charged with accountability for murder and obstructing justice. Timmy and Sarah were charged in Youth Court with being delinquent youths.

The three contend Tim Butler was killed after years of abusive behavior. Detectives said they interviewed others who contradicted that characterization.

Timmy Butler faces the possibility of being held at the Pine Hills state boys school in Miles City until his 19th birthday. He is scheduled to be sentenced June 22.

Public defender Larry Mansch has said he will ask Henson to put Timmy Butler on probation and place him in Alberton, where he is currently living with a volunteer foster family. His sister is living with another family.

Missoula County Attorney Robert L. Deschamps III said Thursday he will ask Henson to confine Butler at Pine Hills, but he's not sure for how long.

"I think I'm pretty much compelled to ask for some incarceration," Deschamps told the Missoulian. "That's based more on a sense of moral outrage and emotion than what is necessarily in the best interest of the kid."