Former CNA sentenced to 14 years in prison for sexual assault plot

Channing Butler
Channing Butler

A former certified nursing assistant was sentenced to 14 years in prison Friday for orchestrating a scheme to film men sexually assaulting residents of the facilities where he worked.

Channing Butler, 26, was arrested in January after he tried to pay men to come to the senior living facility where he worked to assault female memory care residents while he took photos and videos.

Butler made Facebook accounts under female names to solicit the men to join his scheme, according to local authorities. He is believed to have contacted 118 men, with about 90 of them declining involvement.

To those who did respond, Butler would say, “‘I have an older lady you can have sex with for money' and negotiate a dollar amount,” Andre Davis, a detective in Champaign, IL, told the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette.

An investigation of Butler's mobile internet history also showed that he had searched the terms “elder rape, nurse rape, CNA rape of elderly and elder law,” authorities said.

The assaults were planned but never carried out; one of the men solicited by Butler alerted authorities. Butler had previously worked at one other senior living community and one skilled nursing facility in the area.

During his sentencing Friday, Judge Heidi Ladd called Butler's scheme “repugnant, reprehensible, egregious and horrifying,” according to local reports.  Ladd sentenced Butler to one year less than the 15 years recommended by the state for his charges. Butler could be released in less than seven years if he earns credit for good behavior.

“I wasn't thinking clearly or not at all,” Butler said in court on Friday. “I'm a good person. In 26 years, I've never had a run-in with the law. I get along with everyone. Everyone has made a mistake.”

The Illinois Attorney General's office filed charges last week against three other people involved in the scheme. Two are already in prison serving terms for other crimes, while a third remains at large.