Trio enter pleas of innocence in Butler death

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 4, 2005

Victim left in burning home


Staff Reporter

LAPLACE – Three LaPlace men plead not guilty Monday after being charged with the first degree murder of Natasha Baggett-Butler last September.

Lawrence Babin, 21, Mark Keller, 18 and Bryan Stewart, 18, are being held on a $500,000 bond at the Percy Hebert building after being indicted by the St. John the Baptist Grand Jury and arraigned, according to the St. John District Attorney’s Office.

According to the DA Office the state of Louisiana has the option to sentence all three men to the death penalty if convicted of first degree murder.

Allegedly, the three men broke into Butler’s home on 2253 Country Club Drive in LaPlace. She was found burned, bonded, gagged in her bathtub, according to the DA’s Office.

Three men were arrested on March 10 this year and immediately charged with first-degree murder and jailed. Authorities believe Butler’s home was set on fire in order to destroy any evidence of the murder.

Butler’s aunt Jeri Eron and other family members have shown continuous gratitude for the on-going investigation. Eron described her niece as “a warm and friendly young woman.” Butler was 31 years old and a dental hygienist.