The Knuckleheads of the Day award
Today's winners are Manatee County Judge George K. Brown Jr and the Manatee County Sheriff's Department. Judge Brown gets the award for driving his 33-year-old son Paul to apartments that he subsequently burglarized. The Manatee County Sheriff's Department gets the award for not arresting Judge Brown as an accomplice.
Brown showed bad judgment and if I had done what he did, I'd be in jail. The only reason he isn't, is because of our corrupt justice system where judges are above the law. We have judicial conduct panels that allows judges off with wrist slaps after they falsely imprison people for going to a wrong courtroom. If you or I did the same, we'd be in jail. The Sheriff's Department in Manatee County gets the award for not enforcing the law equally.
The lengthy Sarasota Herald-Tribune article is below. Manatee County Judge George K. Brown Jr and the Manatee County Sheriff's Department are today's knuckleheads of the day.
Linked to- Bright & Early, Cao's Blog, Right Wing Nation, Adam's Blog, Samantha Burns, Mudville Gazette, Jo's Cafe, TMH's Bacon Bits, Random Yak, Third World County, Blue Star, Stuck on Stupid, Madman Returns, Point Five, Bloggin Outloud,
BRADENTON -- Twice in the same week, sheriff's detectives say, Manatee County Judge George K. Brown Jr. drove his 33-year-old son to houses the son burglarized.
The victims in the first burglary found some of their stolen stuff, including clothing, an old camera and a skateboard, in the judge's Bradenton home, Manatee County sheriff's reports show.
The intrigue surrounding the judge's role in the cases heightened this week after authorities revealed he had driven his son on not one, but two burglaries.
One victim of the burglaries said the judge should be held accountable; so far no action has been taken against him.
"If you're driving your son around and he's robbing places, you are pretty much enabling him to be the person he is," burglary victim Dylan Boyles said Thursday.
Two days after the first burglary, Judge Brown drove to a duplex where he dropped off his son. The judge waited in his car as his son pried open a rear door and walked out with a fish tank, officials say.
The resident returned home and confronted the judge and his son, Paul R. Brown, a convicted felon with a drug addiction, according to his father.
When the victim said he was calling police, Judge Brown drove away with his son in the passenger seat.
Still, sheriff's officials say Judge Brown isn't the criminal accessory some local attorneys say he could be. There's no evidence the judge knew he was helping his son commit crimes, or that he helped him dodge police, they say.
That doesn't sit well with the victims in the first burglary, where Paul Brown allegedly broke into a house in the 1600 block of Roslyn Avenue in Bradenton.
"His dad has bailed him out his whole life. I know I'm not getting the whole story from his dad," said Boyles, 25, who lived with his brother, David, at the house. "It just blows my mind that we're even in this situation."
A message left with Judge Brown's office Thursday was not returned. Attorneys who know Brown call him an overprotective father who is emotionally drained by the attention his son's burglary cases have brought him.
Judge Brown, 60, continues to hear misdemeanor cases that include domestic battery, shoplifting and marijuana possession.
Paul Brown is jailed on charges of grand theft and seven counts of burglary.
Sheriff's deputies arrested Paul Brown a few days after the burglaries when he was spotted acting suspiciously in his father's neighborhood.
Victims David and Dylan Boyles question the role Judge Brown played in the burglaries in which detectives say he drove his son.
The burglary on Roslyn Avenue was reported July 27 when David Boyles returned from Orlando.
The Boyles brothers immediately suspected Paul Brown, who used to work with Dylan Boyles repairing pools. Paul Brown had recently showed up at the Boyles residence after not being seen for months.
David Boyles, 21, investigating the break-in, called the Brown house and spoke to the judge's wife, Margaret, that afternoon.
She said her son wasn't home. Boyles started talking about the stolen items, and the judge's wife mentioned some of the things laying around the house -- such as a skateboard.
"That's ours," David Boyles said.
Boyles called the sheriff despite Margaret Brown's insistence that he not, authorities said. "I want to get this stuff on record. I didn't want to have my word versus hers," David Boyles said.
Most of the items the Boyles brothers reported stolen -- including a snowboard, DVD movies, PlayStation games and a BMX bike -- have not been found. The brothers are also missing their Social Security cards and birth certificates.
David's brother, Dylan, said he spoke with Judge Brown shortly after the burglary: "He said 'if I were you, I'd just write it off and move on in life because Paul's going to prison and he doesn't have any money.' "
"This is a judge telling me this. I was like 'dude, you're smoking crack,' " Dylan Boyles said.
Judge Brown said he would call if any other items turned up, Dylan Boyles said.
The same day the brothers reported the burglary, a detective called the judge and his son about a burglary less than a mile away on 63rd Avenue West.
Brown told authorities he wasn't paying attention when his son got out of his car and went behind the duplex the afternoon of July 27.
The resident, Chris Campbell, pulled up and saw Paul Brown carrying an empty fish tank out of his house, where he lives with his girlfriend. Other items are still missing from the house, a report said.
Paul Brown returned the tank when Campbell, 20, confronted him.
Brown got into the passenger seat of his father's Lexus, but Campbell wouldn't let the Browns leave.
He ordered George Brown -- who identified himself as a judge -- to open up the car for an inspection. The judge popped the trunk and showed him the back seat, but Campbell didn't find anything.
That burglary report gets the Boyles brothers fired up because their break-in happened two days before that one.
"You're a judge. You can't run with your son who just broke into a place. If you didn't do anything wrong, why do you take off?" David Boyles asked. "The whole story doesn't make sense."
"If he knew about anything, charge him. I have no remorse for him or his son."
Labels: Knucklehead of the Day