Eden man pleads to statutory rape, stabbing

January 22, 2014

Fairlamb_stephen_mason_county_pressBy Rob Alway. Editor-in-Chief. 

LUDINGTON — Stephen Mikel Fairlamb pleaded guilty this morning in 51st Circuit Court to having sex with a 14-year-old girl and then stabbing the girl’s father. The 19-year-old Eden Township man was initially charged with assault with intent to commit murder, felonious assault and criminal sexual conduct third degree.

Today, he accepted a plea agreement from the Mason County Prosecutor’s Office, which drops the first count of intent to commit murder. That charge had a maximum penalty of life in prison. State guidelines call for felonious assault to have a maximum of 5 years in prison and CSC third degree a maximum of 15 years in prison. In December of 2013, Fairlamb had rejected a similar offer from the prosecutor.

Prosecutor Paul Spaniola offered a plea agreement today of 4.5 to 15 years in prison for the CSC complaint and 15 months to 4 years (concurrent) with the assault charge. Fairlamb will also be expected to pay restitution, which will exceed $35,000, Spaniola told the court.

Fairlamb told the court what happened at the South Darr Road home on Sept. 22, 2013 and what led up to the events of that night.

He said he started living with the family in February or March of that year when the father had provided him with a job. He said he was initially under the impression that the daughter was 16. But, later in the summer, when riding in a vehicle with the mother and two daughters, found out that the daughters were twins and both were 14.

Fairlamb said that he and the daughter had intercourse once, shortly before the events of Sept. 22, 2013.

“I was in a relationship with (the daughter), which went farther than either of us wanted it to,” he said. “Both of us had no experience in any relationship matter. Both of us were virgins.” He told the court that he had sex with the girl once, at 2 a.m., in the family home while others were also in the house.

He had decided to discuss what had happened with the father. “I had scheduled a meeting with (the father) that night at Applebee’s in Ludington. Before we met, he had come home from a church camping. He went out hunting with his daughter and she shot a deer on a youth hunt. I was helping him skin it, which was the reason we had not met yet. After I got done skinning the deer, I went back into the house. I went out later to see what was taking them so long.” At that time, he had discovered the father, mother and daughter talking. The father told Fairlamb to go back into the house.

He went back into the house and took a nap.

“When I woke up I went out into the living room and discovered (the father) and his wife talking to one of his daughters. (The father) turned around and told me to get back into the room and me he was going to talk to me. We were arguing. He wanted to talk about the situation. I wanted to wait until my brother-in-law got there. I did not want to turn into any violent acts.”

Fairlamb said he pulled out his phone to text his brother-in-law. The father, Fairlamb said, accused Fairlamb of having pictures of the daughter on the phone. After the two struggled, the father eventually took the phone and smashed it with a baseball bat.

Fairlamb still had a knife with him, from skinning the deer. “I felt he was going to come after me next, especially since he had threatened me. I took the knife and I stabbed him three times in the back. I thought he was going to get back up and attack me with the bat. I was holding him there but he didn’t seem to be restraining much. I yelled at him, ‘if you try to hurt me again I will kill you.’ His wife heard that and she tried to break into the bedroom.”

Though Fairlamb and the father were against the door, the mother managed to push her way inside the door enough to hit Fairlamb. He then jumped out a window to the outside. But, he said, he returned and offered to help administer first aid. Shortly afterwards, deputies from Mason County Sheriff’s Office, along with fire and EMS personnel arrived. Fairlamb was then handcuffed and placed into a police car.

He is scheduled to be sentenced on Tuesday, March 11 at 2:15 p.m.


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