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Already a convicted sex offender, Talent man faces new sex-abuse charges

Mark Butterfield, who helped on 'Take Back the Night' film in Ashland, held on $500,000 bail
 Posted: 2:00 AM August 23, 2011

A Talent videographer who helped make an Ashland film to raise awareness of sexual assault, and who himself turned out to be convicted sex offender, has been jailed on new sex abuse charges.

Mark Butterfield, 50, was arraigned before Jackson County Circuit Judge Benjamin Bloom late last week on four counts of first-degree sex abuse. Butterfield remained in jail Monday on $500,000 bail.

Ashland police arrested Butterfield Wednesday, saying the case involves a single minor victim who recently told an adult about alleged abuse by Butterfield, which the victim said occurred approximately four years earlier. That person in turn notified authorities, who proceeded with their investigation of Butterfield and the allegations, police said.

Butterfield's pretrial hearing is scheduled for today, court records show.

In 2004, Butterfield pleaded guilty to two counts of encouraging child sexual abuse, stemming from a collection of child pornography videos his then-wife had discovered in their Ashland home, according to court documents and police reports. Following his conviction later that year, Butterfield served 20 days in jail and was placed on two years probation.

In 2010, Butterfield shot footage at a "Take Back the Night" rally in downtown Ashland, and of a gathering in an alley where a woman told police she was raped by a stranger.

Butterfield agreed to a limited interview in the Ashland Daily Tidings in February 2010 after his background came to light, saying he was "just trying to do something good for (the) community."

Butterfield, who has created short films on past community events, such as a "Vagina Monologues" performance by Southern Oregon University students, said he was working on a collaborative sexual assault project that was intended to be entered in the Ashland Independent Film Festival that year.

Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or e-mail sspecht@mailtribune.com.


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