On Friday, an Anne Arundel County judge sentenced 35-year-old Courtney Butler to life in prison plus ten years for the attempted murder of a fellow inmate following a dispute over juice boxes. State’s Attorney Anne Colt Leitess announced that the sentence would run consecutive to the 35-year sentence Butler was already serving for a robbery and weapons violation from a 2009 incident in Baltimore County.

“To attempt to take a life over something so trivial is extremely disturbing and shows the defendant has no regard for human life,” Leitess said. “This wasn’t a spur of the moment crime as the defendant stewed and planned this attack. I appreciate the judge’s sentence as it will keep this defendant out of our community.”

After a days-long court trial, Judge Cathleen M. Vitale found Butler guilty of attempted first- and second-degree murder, first-degree assault, reckless endangerment, and weapons violations for the March 25, 2021, attack at the Jessup Correctional Institution.

According to the prosecution, Butler, the victim, and another inmate argued about distributing several juice boxes. Butler threatened the victim and was repeatedly seen making trips past the victim’s cell over a six-hour period. Butler made a phone call in which he told a woman he would get in trouble for something he was planning and would lose his job as an inmate worker. The woman encouraged Butler not to do anything, but he refused.

Just after 6:30 p.m., Butler walked up from behind armed with a knife-like object and stabbed the victim multiple times in the back before throwing him to the ground. The victim was rushed to the University of Maryland Medical Center’s Shock Trauma Unit, where he was treated for his injuries.

Assistant States Attorney Nancy Olin prosecuted the case on behalf of the citizens of Anne Arundel County.

David M. Higgins II, Publisher/EditorEditor-in-Chief

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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