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Accused murderer sentenced for threatening other inmates

Philip Butler, 36, is escorted out of court Tuesday morning, after being charged with second-degree murder in connection with the death of George Allan Butler, reported to be his brother. Tara Bradbury/The Telegram
Philip Butler, 36, during a previous court appearance. – Tara Bradbury file photo/The Telegram

Accused murderer Philip Butler was given a 35-day jail sentence this week for threatening two other inmates in Her Majesty's Penitentiary last July.

Butler, 36, pleaded guilty to the charges, and told the court there was no excuse for his actions.

On July 13, Butler got into an argument with a fellow inmate after the other man called Butler a "f---ing rat." Butler threatened to kill the man and they got into a physical altercation, with Butler pinning the man down and punching him. No injuries were sustained by either inmate.

The following week, an incident occurred in the prison that resulted in all inmates being confined to their cells. Butler reportedly grew agitated, and told correctional officers that a fellow inmate had been making fun of his late friend. He told an officer, "I'm going to kill him when I get out of this cell."

Butler has been in custody since Victoria Day weekend last May, when he is alleged to have murdered his brother, George Butler, at a home on Comerford's Road in C.B.S. Court documents indicate George Butler lived at the address.

A preliminary inquiry into the matter is set to take place in January. Over the course of eight days, a provincial court judge will hear evidence in the murder case to determine if it's sufficient to send it to trial at Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court. If that happens, Butler has chosen a trial before judge and jury.

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