COLUMBUS (WCMH) – A Columbus man could face a maximum sentence of life in prison after police say he raped a young girl over a period of four years.
According to Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien, Dalton Yance Butler III, 37, was indicted on nine counts of rape, six counts of sexual battery and one count of pandering sexually oriented matter involving a minor.
The abuse allegedly started when the girl was 10 years old and continued for years. Butler is also accused of taking photos and video of the abuse.
Butler entered a general plea of not guilty to all the counts against him during his arraignment Friday afternoon and waived a reading of the indictment.
The victim, who is now 14, came forward to her mother earlier this year. While the sexual abuse allegedly began when she was 14, O’Brien said Butler may have had improper conduct with the victim when she was as young as eight years old.
“She has a younger sister who was about to turn ages to the point at which he had started the sexual assaults on her,” O’Brien said. “She was concerned that they may start on her younger sister, so she disclosed to the mother, who immediately reported it to police.”
Because of the victim’s age, Butler could face a potential life sentence on the rape charges. He’s currently being held without bail.