Michael Brewer, 18, was arrested on drug charges early Thursday in Palm Beach County. Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Sgt. Mark Wysocky spoke about the case. His mother, Valerie Brewer, spoke about her son is doing these days on Wednesday.
Michael Brewer, who was set on fire in a horrific 2009 attack, was arrested on drug charges early Thursday in Palm Beach County.
Brewer, 18, was arrested at 1:44 a.m. and faces several drug charges, including cocaine possession, possession of marijuana less than 20 grams, and drug possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, according to a jail official.
A state trooper pulled over the white minivan Brewer was driving after he ran a red light, an arrest report said.
"Michael Brewer got out of the car and then they subsequently found the drugs that were on his person, some of the items he had in his pants, and the other things we found were inside the vehicle," including drug paraphernalia, Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Sgt. Mark Wysocky said.
In court on Thursday, Brewer was represented by Assistant Public Defender Steve Benedict, WPTV reported.
The judge ruled that Brewer could be released of his own recognizance under supervision, even if he elected to not pay the $6,000 bail. He would be subject to random drug testing.
Brewer bonded out of jail Thursday afternoon. Benedict was quoted by WPTV as saying Brewer would stay with his parents in West Palm Beach.
"Those charges are not that serious," Benedict was quoted as saying. "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 was attacked on Oct. 12, 2009 and three teens have been sentenced in the case.
Denver Jarvis was sentenced to 8 years in prison with a probation term of 10 years. Jesus Mendez, now 18, was sentenced to 11 years in prison, followed by 19 years of probation. Matthew Bent got 11 years in prison with credit for time served.
Police said they confronted Brewer, who was their classmate, after an argument over a $40 video game that Brewer had reportedly agreed to buy from one of them. One of the teens doused Brewer in rubbing alcohol, and Mendez allegedly lit a match and threw it on the teen, who jumped into a nearby pool to put out the flames, police said.
Brewer was burned on over 60 percent of his body and spent months in the hospital recovering from his injuries.
The arrest report said that the minivan Brewer was driving was stopped by a FHP trooper because it made a U-turn, running a red light. And the trooper said he noticed a lot of action inside the vehicle as he approached it.
Brewer told the trooper he didn't have a valid driver's license, and as they were talking, the trooper smelled a strong raw marijana odor coming from the car, which had three other occupants, the report said.
"I asked Mr. Brewer Jr. if he was in possession of any illegal substances, he replied that he had just bought some 'bongs' and glass pipes, and that was about it," the FHP arrest report said.
Brewer said he had a pocket knife on him when asked if he had any weapons, the report said. As the trooper was patting him down, a plastic bag containing a green leafy substance fell on the ground, along with a brown pill container, which had white rocks in it, the report said.
The arrest report said the substances field tested positive for marijuana and crack cocaine.
None of the other occupants were found to have anything illegal on them, but a search of the vehicle uncovered 14 glass pipes, two of them had drug residue, a 24-inch tall glass bong, three empty pill containers, a drug grinder, cigarette papers, three pills of oxicodone 30 mg, a two-inch red plastic straw, an empty prescription bottle of morphine and a blade, the report said.
"Mr. Brewer than confirmed that the crack cocaine, the marijuana and all the paraphernalia belonged to him," the report said.
Jarvis, one of the teens convicted in the attack on Brewer, was back in court Wednesday. Brewer didn't attend the hearing, but his mother and grandmother did.
"He's trying to find himself, the past three years have been really difficult, he's got a long way to go," said his mother, Valerie Brewer.
His grandmother Reenie Brewer told NBC 6 over the phone Thursday that the family was very upset, but beyond that she would not make any public comments – except to say that they will get Michael Brewer any help he needs and will support him.
As she described on Wednesday how her son is doing these days, Valerie Brewer seemed to foreshadow a troubled path ahead for him.
"Physically, he still has some limitations but mentally, he's got a long way to go, he really does, he still wakes up with nightmares and he's having a lot of trouble dealing with the fact that people he knew did this to him," she said.
More related stories: