Reporting John MacLauchlan
FT. LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A teen who was critically injured when he was attacked by three teens in 2009 and set him on fire has been released from jail.
Michael Brewer, 18, was arrested in Palm Beach County on drug charges including multiple counts including possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, possession of cocaine, possession of marijuana and possession of drug equipment. He’s been released after his family posted the $6,000 bond.
Wednesday night around 9 p.m. Brewer was stopped by a Florida Highway Patrol trooper after he made an illegal u-turn on Belvedere Road east of State Road 7, according to his arrest report.
Brewer reportedly admitted to the trooper that he didn’t have a valid driver driver’s license. The trooper noted in the report “a strong odor of raw marijuana emanating from the vehicle’s interior”.
When asked if he had any illegal substances, Brewer reportedly told the trooper he had just bought some “bongs” and glass pipes.
The trooper asked Brewer to step out of the vehicle and while performing a pat down “a zip lock plastic bag containing a green leafy substance fell on the ground followed by a brown pill container, containing little white rocks.”
A quick test showed the material in the bag was marijuana and the rocks were crack cocaine.
Brewer was arrested and booked into the county jail just before 2 a.m. on Thursday.
During the trial of one of the teens involved in the attack, testimony showed it stemmed from a dispute between Matthew Bent, then 15, and Brewer, then 15, over a marijuana pipe.
Witnesses said Denver Jarvis, Jesus Mendez and Bent found a jug of rubbing alcohol and decided to pour it on Brewer. At one point, the alcohol was set on fire.
Brewer survived the attack by jumping into a swimming pool at a Deerfield Beach apartment complex. He suffered second and third-degree burns over most of his body. Brewer, who nearly died, spent months in the hospital undergoing painful skin graft surgeries followed by lengthy physical rehabilitation.
Jarvis and Mendez pleaded no contest in the attack. Jarvis admitted pouring the rubbing alcohol on Brewer and Mendez said he was the one who lit the fire with a lighter. Jarvis was sentenced to eight years and Mendez was given 11 years. Both testified against Bent during his trial. Bent, who was not convicted of the most serious charge of attempted murder, was sentenced to 11 years.
On Monday, Jarvis had part of his sentence reduced.
In a mitigation hearing Wednesday, a judge ruled that prison sentence of eight years would stand but his probation period would be reduced from 22 years to 10 years. The reduction was granted because Jarvis testified against Bent during his trial.