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Man accused of lewd conduct with minor arrested for failing to appear in court

Crime Watch

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BLACKFOOT — One of the two brothers who allegedly admitted to investigators they had sex with a 15-year-old is now in police custody.

Tristton Brumfield, 22, failed to appear for his initial court appearance on April 25. Magistrate Judge James Barrett issued a bench warrant, and Tristton Brumfield was taken into custody on May 21. He is being held in the Bingham County Jail on a $20,000 bond.

He and his 25-year-old brother Bryce Brumfield, are each facing two felony counts of lewd conduct with a minor under 16. When the charges were brought against Tristton and Bryce, rather than arrest them, Barrett issued a summons for them to appear in court.

It’s not clear why a summons was initially issued rather than an arrest warrant. Bingham County Prosecutor Paul Rodgers said a summons could be issued instead of an arrest warrant for any number of reasons. He said the defendants’ age, age of the case, when the conduct took place, criminal history, victim safety and the type of allegations are all factors in deciding whether or not to issue a summons or an arrest warrant.

According to court documents, unlike Tristton, Bryce appeared in court for his hearings and is scheduled for arraignment in district court on June 10.

Now that Tristton is in custody, he is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on May 30.

RELATED: Brothers who admitted to having sex with the same 15-year-old girl charged with lewd conduct

Law enforcement began investigating the Brumfield brothers in September 2018 when a social worker from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare told investigators about a possible case involving sexual abuse of a minor.

During an investigation by police, multiple witnesses told officers they had observed both brothers having sex with the victim at different times while she was living with them.

When the victim was questioned she admitted to having sex with both of the Brumfield brothers. Detectives spoke with Tristton and Bryce, who both admitted to having sex with the girl multiple times with the knowledge she was 15 years old. Under Idaho law, a minor cannot consent to having sex with an adult.