true crime

Brain damaged Trump supporter pleads not guilty…

Last week, while I was drifting merrily through Scotland on Hebridean Princess, I wrote a blog post about Curt James Brockway, a brain damaged Army veteran and ardent Trump supporter accused of choke slamming a 13 year old boy. On August 3rd of this year, Mr. Brockway allegedly grew incensed at the 13 year old child because he was wearing a hat during the playing of the national anthem at a rodeo in Montana. When Mr. Brockway asked the boy to remove his hat, the boy reportedly responded with a hearty “fuck you”, allegedly inspiring Brockway, three times his victim’s age and much larger in size, to body slam the boy.

Brockway’s excuse is that he suffered a traumatic brain injury in a car accident. He was serving in the Army at Fort Lewis at the time. Years after his accident, he’s an extreme supporter of Donald Trump, and believes body slamming the boy was warranted, since Trump has said people who disrespect the flag or the national anthem should be punished. Meanwhile, the child Mr. Brockway allegedly assaulted was left with a concussion and skull fracture.

Today, I read that Mr. Brockway, already in legal trouble due to a 2011 conviction of assault with a weapon, pleaded not guilty to the crime of felony assault of a minor. Judge John Lawson reinstated Brockway’s probation, which requires that he stay at home and wear a GPS monitor. In the 2010 incident, Brockway had threatened three people with a weapon during a traffic dispute. He was put on probation and given a suspended ten year prison sentence.

I’m not really surprised that Brockway pleaded not guilty. I’m sure that’s what his lawyer, Lance Jasper, advised him to do. I’m also sure that Brockway feels like he’s in the right for his extreme response to the boy’s disrespect and use of profanity. I think he belongs to a certain segment of society that feels that children need to be taught respect through violence. I first read about Brockway’s plea through a Facebook link from the Army Times. Plenty of people think Brockway was right in putting his hands on another person in violence and fracturing his skull.

It scares me how indoctrinated some military veterans can be when it comes to certain issues. Although a lot of them joke about liberals being so open-minded their brains fall out, I think that conservatives sometimes are guilty of being so closed-minded that their brains can’t access oxygen. This is also often the crowd that thinks corporal punishment is always okay in every situation and a parent’s inalienable right.

Lance Jasper, Brockway’s attorney, is seeking a mental health evaluation for his client. I don’t think that’s unreasonable. I’m sure he does have brain damage from his accident. And, I don’t think he’s brain damaged just because he’s such an ardent Trump supporter that he’d hurt a child, believing Trump would want him, personally, to punish people he thinks are disrespectful and unpatriotic. I’m sure he really does have some functional damage to his brain resulting from his accident and it affects his judgment.

However, Brockway, just like the two Trump lovers who, several months ago, shot each other while drinking alcohol and wearing a bulletproof vest, is just another example of the low caliber of a person who doesn’t question Trump’s toxic leadership, use common sense, or employ critical thinking skills. These people just can’t seem to see what is very obvious to people who aren’t brain damaged.

I don’t know the status of Brockway’s brain today. I do think that if he’s so out of control that he can’t keep his hands to himself at public events, he should not be walking free within society. If he’s so brain damaged or mentally ill that he feels compelled to physically harm other people, he should be in a place where he can be appropriately supervised. Whether that’s prison or a mental hospital remains to be seen. I’m sure more facts will come out during his legal battle. I just hope the kid he hurt will be able to make a full recovery. In the meantime, he’s going to miss part of his childhood and cost his parents a lot in hospital bills thanks to Brockway’s Trump inspired violent outburst.

Granted, we have plenty of violent people in the United States. They seem to be inspired by different things. I’m certainly not saying that Trump is directly to blame for every violent incident. It just seems to me that his leadership is emboldening people who otherwise might not act out in violence and Trump supporters also tend to be pro Second Amendment gun rights types. I am not necessarily anti-gun myself. I know many responsible gun owners. I’d just like to see it a lot more restricted and regulated, like it is in Europe. There is violent crime here, but a lot fewer people die of it because there are far fewer weapons.

I keep thinking I might like to move back to the States soon… so we can own our own house for once. But right now, the United States is completely warped. I’m actually scared to move back there. I’m sure we’ll have to at some point… or at least leave Germany. I just hope it’s sometime when Trump is out of office. I think he’s really damaged the country and awakened a frightening beast in some people. As for Brockway, frankly, I think he deserves a nice long prison sentence. If I was the mother of that boy he harmed, I’d be demanding it.

true crime

Brain damaged Trump supporter choke slams 13 year old…

Meet Curt James Brockway, 39. Brockway is a disabled Army veteran and Trump supporter who is “uber patriotic”. In 2000, Brockway suffered a traumatic brain injury in a car accident. Apparently, his lawyer thinks this injury excuses him from choke slamming a thirteen year old boy when they were both attending a rodeo last Saturday at the Mineral County Fairgrounds in the town of Superior, Montana.

It seems the boy was wearing a hat during the National Anthem and Brockway felt the boy was being disrespectful. He asked the young man to remove his hat, but the boy cursed at Brockway in response. So Brockway, believing that Donald Trump would have wanted him to take a stand, grabbed the boy by the throat and body slammed him, leaving him with a potential concussion and skull fracture. Witnesses say the boy had blood coming out of his ears. The 13 year old was airlifted to Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital in Spokane, Washington.

Meanwhile, Brockway was arrested and charged with assault on a minor, which is a felony. He could go to prison for up to five years and have to pay a $50,000 fine. Brockway is already listed as a violent offender after a 2010 incident involving assault with a weapon. Brockway’s comment regarding the boy was, “I guess I messed up because he got hurt. But I’m a patriot.” And apparently, that gives him the right to injure other people, particularly those one-third his age…

The fact that this man so severely injured a boy one-third his age over the boy’s choice to wear a cap during the National Anthem is horrifying enough. What makes it worse is that Brockway’s excuse is that he thought that was what President Trump is advocating normal citizens to do. The man claims he didn’t know physically assaulting a child is a crime and cited Trump’s remarks about how people who kneel during the anthem should be fired or those who burn the flag should be punished. And, apparently, he thinks he’s the one who should be carrying out these consequences for those he deems “disrespectful”.

I don’t know that I would necessarily directly blame Trump for Brockway’s actions, since it does sound like he has brain damage and, perhaps, some mental health issues. However, I do think Trump’s hateful rhetoric inflames people like Curt Brockway, who resort to violence to get their points across. I don’t think the boy was necessarily right to swear at Mr. Brockway; but his use of profanity, in no way, validates Brockway’s actions. It sounds to me like Brockway could use some time cooling his heels outside of society.

It’s a shame that basic civility and common decency seems to have eroded even further ever since Trump was elected. I do think Brockway needs some serious help, but someone with such poor impulse control and understanding of the law should not be wandering around free. I hope he gets the help he needs… far away from innocent bystanders who might behave in a way that he thinks is “disrespectful” to the president or the U.S. flag.