ST. LOUIS – The former Jefferson County municipal prosecuting attorney pleaded guilty Thursday to federal charges after confessing to having sexual contact with a court defendant and lying about it to the FBI.

According to the prosecutors from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Missouri, James Isaac Crabtree, 40, was charged with deprivation of rights under color of law (her right to bodily integrity) and making false statements to the FBI.

On March 8, 2021, Crabtree had a woman in his courthouse office after normal business hours. The woman was a defendant in multiple cases being prosecuted by Crabtree.

Crabtree admitted in court to having sexual contact with the woman, including kissing and touching the victim and directing her to undress in his office. He admitted to lying to FBI agents about the incident during a March 3, 2022 interview.

A U.S. District Court judge scheduled Crabtree to be sentenced on November 15. Crabtree faces up to a year in prison and/or a $100,000 fine for the civil rights charge. Lying to the FBI carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.