GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - A Kent County man was supposed to go to prison for running from police. Instead, that sentence was reduced to time served as a reward for stopping an attack on a Kent County corrections officer.
"I want to thank you personally on behalf of the judicial system for stepping in and probably saving this corrections officer's life," Kent County Circuit Court Judge Mark Trusock told 31-year-old Antonio Brown Thursday.
Brown, originally sentenced to between 18 months and 5 years, was resentenced Thursday afternoon by Trusock to time already served.
"I realize this is somewhat unprecedented," Trusock said at the proceedings.
Trusock said in court that Brown managed to pull fellow inmate Willie Lee Wilson Williams off the guard as she was being choked, likely saving her life.
"Sir, I think this was something that you did that was heroic. That was brave and honorable and I think it needs to be taken into effect in your sentencing," said Trusock in court.
Brown would have been freed Thursday, but a hold was put on his release because he is wanted on a probation violation out of Indiana.
Williams allegedly jumped the guard as she made her rounds on September 14. The guard, who was alone in the medium security section, or POD, lost her radio in the scuffle.
Cameras in a central control area of the jail didn't pick up the attack. It took as along as 10 minutes for other guards to realize what was happening and respond to the assault.
Wilson is expected to be charged with the assault and attempted jail break.
Kent County Sheriff Lawrence Stelma told 24 Hour News 8 Brown was the first inmate to reach the officer and was the most active in helping her. Stelma called the judge and asked if he could do anything for Brown.
The 31-year-old Brown has a lengthy criminal record, including convictions for aggravated assault, drug related crimes and drunk driving.
Last week's sentence resulted from a case in which Brown ran from Grand Rapids police after he was pulled over for operating a vehicle on a suspended license in June.
Brown is considered a habitual offender, which likely played a role in the original sentencing.
The sheriff admits there's a good chance Brown may someday return to his jail.
"I think if you look at statistics and the recidivism rate, that's a statistical probability," he said.
Still, Stelma said he's comfortable with the judge's decision, saying he hopes Brown recognizes he can be rewarded for good behavior utilizes this instance as a turning point in his life.
Prosecutor William Forsyth also agreed with the judge's decision.
The sheriff said about a half dozen more inmates will get some sort of recognition for helping rescue the guard. Those will be decided on a case-by-case basis.
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