Michael Brewer arrested: Teen who was set on fire in 2009 arrested on multiple drug charges
8:55 AM, Mar 21, 2013
9:52 PM, Mar 21, 2013
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- A teen who was critically injured when he was set on fire during a 2009 attack by three teens was arrested in Palm Beach County on drug charges early this morning.
Michael Brewer, 18, was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail around 1:44 a.m. on multiple drug charges that include possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, possession of marijuana, possession of drug equipment and possession of cocaine.
Brewer was pulled over by Florida Highway Patrol around 7:50 p.m. Wednesday west of Mayacoo Lakes Boulevard after a trooper noticed him driving erratically in a white mini van, according to FHP.
The trooper said he smelled a strong odor of "raw marijuana" coming from the inside of Brewer's vehicle. In the van with Brewer were two juveniles.
When Brewer's pockets were searched by the trooper, a Zip-Lock plastic bag containing marijuana and a pill container containing crack cocaine were discovered, according to an arrest report.
A search of Brewer's car revealed 14 glass pipes, two of them containing drug residue, a 24-inch tall glass bong, three empty pull containers, a drug grinder, cigarette papers, a two-inch red plastic straw, an empty prescription bottle of morphine, three pills of oxicodone and a blade, the report states.
Assistant Public Defender Steve Benedict represented Brewer in court this morning during his first appearance.
The judge ruled that if Brewer chose not to pay a $6,000 bail, he could still be released -- however it would be on his own recognizance under supervision and he would be subject to random drug testing, Benedict said.
Benedict added that Brewer is likely to be released today and will stay with his parents in West Palm Beach.
Benedict said it's normal for a judge to make a decision like this in a case similar to Brewer's.
"Those charges are not that serious," Benedict said. "They're possession of a couple kinds of drugs. They're the least serious felonies you can have. They're not that serious, so it's not unusual for him to be released on his own recognizance."
Brewer's family was not in the courtroom for his first appearance, according to Benedict.
A judge recently sentenced Matthew Bent, 18, to 11 years in prison for his involvement in the attack on Brewer.
Brewer's family had pleaded with the judge for the 11 year sentence.
Brewer was doused with rubbing alcohol right before the attack in 2009. He suffered burns over 80 percent of his body.
Bent's family pleaded with the court for mercy, saying he has completed his G.E.D. and shown good behavior while in jail. His family maintains he did nothing that led up to the attack.
"He didn't do anything wrong. I don't see it as fully justice, there's no justice there at all," said Dennis Bent, Matthew's father.
Denver Jarvis and Jesus Mendez were also part of the attack. Jarvis was sentenced to eight years in prison for pouring the alcohol on Brewer, Mendez for flicking the lighter that sparked the fire.
Brewer survived and moved to Palm Beach County.
Bent was the alleged ringleader. He has been in jail for three years and will get credit for time served.
A jury convicted Bent in June of aggravated battery. He was found not guilty of the more serious charge of attempted murder.