POSTED: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 - 12:22pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 - 12:33pm
Athens, Texas (KETK) — An East Texas man has been sentenced to 15 years behind bars for burglary of a habitation and evidence of other crimes against law enforcement.
Rico Antonio Brown, 26, of Athens, was sentenced Thursday, January 16, 214. Brown had previously pled guilty to burglary of a habitation which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.
Brown was legally eligible and could have received probation.
During the sentence, Assistant District Attorneys, Daniel Cox and Jenny Palmer, presented to the court evidence not only of the burglary to which Brown pled guilty but also evidence of different offenses committed by Brown after the burglary.
Prosecutors presented evidence that on November 20, 2012, Brown forced his way into the apartment of his girlfriend, while their child was in the home sleeping. He proceeded to place his hands around his girlfriend's neck and choked her.
When his girlfriend called police, Brown ran from the scene and warrants were issued for his arrest.
After being arrested on those warrants, Brown posted bond and was released from jail.
While out on bond for the burglary, Brown was confronted in the Wal-Mart parking lot by Officer Bill Carlow of the Athens Police Department.
Carlow found that Brown had stolen six fishing reels inside his jacket.
Carlow attempted to arrest Brown for theft but Brown resisted and a struggle ensued.
At the hearing, Officer Carlow testified to the encounter, pictures of his injuries were shown and the video from his patrol car was shown before the court.
Prosecutors also presented evidence of another encounter that happened May 17, 2013.
On that day, Brown was a passenger in a vehicle that was stopped by Henderson County Sheriff's Office.
Deputy Halbert recognized Brown and knew he had warrants and attempted to place Brown under arrest.
Brown also resisted Deputy Halbert. A struggle also ensued where Deputy Halbert had to use pepper spray on Brown. During the struggle, Brown also attempted to take Halbert's firearm before Halbert was able to safely detain Brown in handcuffs.
Halbert also testified to the struggle. Photos and videos from that encounter was show to the judge.
During closing arguments, Browns defense attorney asked and pled for the court to sentence Brown to probation.
Judge Tarrance responded with a 15 year sentence for Brown stating that he found Brown had no respect for his family or law enforcement.