Plea deal possible in Ethan Stacy murder case

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FARMINGTON -- The man accused of killing a 4-year-old boy in a horrific case of child abuse is trying to reach a plea deal with prosecutors, his defense attorney said.

Nathan Sloop's attorney, Richard Mauro, told FOX 13 News he has been speaking with Davis County prosecutors about a plea bargain in the aggravated murder case involving the death of his stepson, Ethan Stacy.

"We do not have a resolution at this point," Mauro said Friday. "We're talking about the possibility of a resolution, but we do not have one yet."

Mauro would not disclose any terms of a plea bargain, but said there may be a resolution on "other charges" beyond the aggravated murder charge. Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings declined to comment to FOX 13 News about any plea discussions.

Mauro made the comments after a hearing on new charges filed against Sloop. He's accused of attacking a guard inside the Davis County Jail in November.

According to a probable cause statement filed with the charging documents and obtained by FOX 13 News, Sloop punched and scratched a deputy in the face.

"Inmate Sloop attempted to gouge out Deputy Silver's left eye with his thumb," the documents state. "Inmate Sloop was able to get Deputy Silver's head in a choke hold underneath Inmate Sloop's right arm."

Sloop is accused of biting the deputy's thumb, nearly severing it. The deputy received numerous stitches in his thumb, authorities said.

As other deputies tried to restrain Sloop, charging documents say the inmate told them: "You f---er, I gouged your eyes," and told another deputy "Davis, you're next you fat f---, you are next, your turn is coming."

Deputies said in the probable cause statement that Sloop later requested guards bring him a new toothbrush, saying: "I still have pieces of his skin in my mouth."

Sloop looked around the courtroom on Friday during a brief appearance here in 2nd District Court. The judge agreed to delay the assault case until after his next appearance on the aggravated murder charge.

Sloop remains in the Davis County Jail without bail.

Sloop and his wife, Stephanie, are accused of killing her son Ethan Stacy and burying his body in a shallow grave near Powder Mountain in 2010. Prosecutors claim the boy was overdosed on over-the-counter medications to mask signs of child abuse.

8 comments

  • Trish Ramirez

    I hope the DA realizes that the public wants to see this monster executed for his crimes – I am almost positive any plea deal would make that out of the question. Do NOT allow this monster to take the easy way out – do NOT allow him to hide behind paperwork and closed-door deals between defense and prosecuting attorneys. Ethan deserves justice, and anything less than a trial and conviction for murder with a sentence of death is NOT justice. This evil human being doesn’t deserve to exist for the next 50 years in relative comfort on the taxpayer’s dime. Do the right thing here.

  • Debbie Smith

    what the hell plea bargain ? execute him and while you’re at it execute the mother too. but this is Utah I guess a state where they kidnap your children get away with it so now we’re getting with murder 2 huh . how pathetic.

  • Eric Roy

    The American Judicial system needs to take a stand against these people. It seems as though a child killer just gets a wrist slap. Mt step daughter’s killer got 14 years in Jail after he pled out, A Travesty to say the least.

  • mary smith

    He shouldn’t get a plea deal at all, this little boy didn’t get one even though he probably cried and begged for his little life to be spared. It is a dad day when these scum can kill an innocent child and just get a plea bargain and get out in so many years and the child they killed is gone for ever. I have some other inmates get a hold of him and beat him to death!

  • milkie wayzz

    Wait till he gets to prison, he won’t be around very much longer…. Them inmates is pulling numbers out a hat seein who gon get him first. And he killed a child, he better off hanging his self

  • mary smith

    I just find it so unbelievable that they will consider a plea bargain in this case or any other where a innocent child was killed. This is happening all over all the time. I can’t understand and never will how anyone can harm and kill a poor child who has no defense against the person. Yet every day I read where another child has been killed by some monster and in most cases the mother is involved and helping cover it up. She deserves death to. If they get off without the death penalty then I know there is NO justice and no concern for our young children. Even though the baby wasn’t ours I feel everyone should have a voice in this. They deserve to be put to death, nothing less!

  • Kathy

    No plea has been announced but I can tell you this much. If the defense can prove Shelby’s Law unconstitutional, the death penalty will be gone for both of them. See, Shelbys Law states that if a child under the age of 14 dies as a result of child abuse whether they intend to kill the child or not, it is punisable by death. However, this law is very vague and could use some work and I personally think the defense is going to win this argument…sorry, just stating what I see as what will happen. Once Shelbys Law has been taken off the table the “Capitol Murder” charge will be dropped as intent would then have to be proven beyond all reasonable doubt by a jury of their peers. (Side note…couldn’t be done for Shelby, ergo Shelbys Law) I think the prosecution would be forced to take the death penalty off the table and go for something less. Neglegent homicide is what I am seeing happening for Nathan, along with the other charges. As for Stephanie, there are those who think she is going to turn states evidence or whatever to get a lesser charge…I think not. Think what you wish but I don’t think they need her testimony against him in court. I believe Neglegent homicide carries a 5 year term here in Utah for those who don’t know it already. Do the math….Stephanie will see maybe another 5 years, if that, as she has already done over 3 1/2 years and Nathan will see substancially more time due to the fact that he desecrated Ethans body which carries a much stiffer penalty. Of course he also faces his assult charges and terrioristic threat charges. Keep in mind that all of these charges will have to be proven before a jury beyond any and all resonable doubt and the burden of proof is on the state, not the defense. Unless Nathan pleads guilty to the assult and terroristic charges or pleas out on them. Troy will act according to the evidence he has. If he can’t get a death penalty conviction, he isn’t going to try for one, he’s going to go for what he KNOWS will stick…if he’s smart, and I think he is. This is what happened in the Casey Anthony trial. Jeff Ashton went for the gusto without having the evidence to back up his claims. (side note…emotions don’t count as evidence) just sayin… Had he gone for child negligect, he probably would have Casey behind bars right now because I think he PROVED she was at least neglectful. Instead, probably out of response to public outcry, he went for the death penalty against her with NO solid evidence. They didn’t even LOOK at Casey’s father George…who also was one of the last persons to see her alive. I’m just saying, don’t expect Troy Rawlings to go for more than he thinks he can get and don’t be disappointed when/if the charges change because they very well could. If Shelbys Law is taken off the table, expect changes. Mr. Rawlings is not God, he can’t make things happen because people feel emotional about them. Unfortunately our law isn’t about seeing justice served, it’s about who has the best smoke and mirrors a lot of the time. Not that I like that, it’s just what it is. Ethan is happy and safe, I feel terribly for ALL of his family as I know this has caused much pain to them and I pray, no matter what the outcome is, that they are able to forgive and heal. I can only imagine the pain but I am hopful that through this pain something positive can be gained. I know Ethan wouldn’t want all the hatred and strife in his name. I know emotions are high but try to understand the law and how things work so you aren’t completely shocked. We haven’t even heard all of the evidence…I know that there is much more evidence to be heard and seen. We can’t make a final judgment until we’ve heard and seen ALL of the evidence. And lastly, even if your mind is made up…like most minds were in the Casey Anthony trial…they thought FOR SURE she was going to be found guilty….realize that all the emotions you are feeling are not taken into account when the jury sits down to deliberate. Look at ALL the evidence without prejudice for either side and THEN ask youself, in accordance with the laws….what can they truly be found guilty of? That is what they should be charged with because THAT is what will STICK. Also for those who keep wondering why Nathan hasn’t gone for an insanity plea, we won’t because the insanity plea is not allowed in Utah. He could go for diminished capacity but has not. A person can be found incompetent to stand trial in Utah. The insanity plea is not an option here…for those who haven’t looked into Utah law…now you know. For the record, I love Ethan more than anything, he is my heart and I know he is happy and safe and suffers no longer. And I think it makes him sad to see so many continue to suffer and not heal. Just my opinion, of which I am entitled. And I will end by saying….ELEPHANT!!!! I know, it makes no sense, but it actually does. Peace be upon you all.

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