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A woman who had supervisor responsibilities at the Butte Pre-release Center has received an 18-month deferred sentence for having sex with a male inmate.

Brittany Popovich, 30, had initially pleaded not guilty to felony sexual intercourse without consent but changed her plea last week in a deal worked out with prosecutors, according to court records.

District Judge Brad Newman followed their recommendations and gave her the deferred sentence. She will be on probation during that time, and if she follows its terms, she can request the felony charge be dismissed.

Popovich was accused of having sex with the inmate twice between Oct. 20 and Nov. 5, 2016, at an apartment on West Granite Street. Under Montana law, an inmate can’t give consent to sexual contact with a supervisor at a correctional facility.

According to the charge, the male inmate submitted to a random urinalysis on Nov. 6 and knew it would test positive for methamphetamine. He approached Popovich and told her to “take care of the situation” or he would tell staff about their relationship.

She told the inmate she couldn’t take care of the issue “and decided it was best to come forward about her conduct,” the charging document says.

According to a police detective’s report, Popovich and the inmate said they had sex twice and “the only discrepancy is who initiated the relationship.”

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Reporter with emphasis on government and politics.

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