Tag Archives: Westminster

Delayed Habeas Corpus for Eric Brandt, then two Westminster kangaroo courts, despite $3,500 bond being paid.


WESTMINSTER, COLORADO- It was quite a day for Eric “Fuck Cops” Brandt, in custody at the Denver County Jail since Monday August 10, as usual for exercising his First Amendment rights. Even by Wednesday the jail wouldn’t allow Eric visitors or bail. Next they delayed his court appearance almost two hours. Then the judge wouldn’t grant a PR bond, choosing to require the homeless veteran to raise $3,500 for bail. Then the clerk insisted the entire docket be completed before the bond paperwork would be available. Eventually Eric’s bond was covered by a benefactor, but before Eric could be processed for release, the City of Westminster transferred him to their municipal court for a full afternoon of hearings.

In Westminster, Associate Judge Paul Basso refused Eric’s motion for a jury trial then immediately declared court to be in recess and walked out as Eric’s attorney David lane tried to voice his objections. Funny story: though Basso had declined the motion, he misspoke and declared that Eric was to have a jury trial, so Basso had to reenter the courtroom to reiterate for the record: there was to be no jury trial. This time Lane offered to put Brandt’s former public defender on the stand, he was there waiting, to attest that Brandt had never declined his right to a jury. Judge Basso refused and again walked out.

Next up, Presiding Judge John Stipech declined motions to dismiss, to recuse, or to appoint a special prosecutor for Brandt’s cases. Stipech declined to hear witnesses present and ready to testify that Westminster staffers were overheard plotting to incarcerate Brandt no matter what. No hearing, set all the trial dates up like bowling pins.

Next on the agenda, Judge Stipech ordered Eric to remove documents he’d posted to “his Facebook”: confidential police internal affairs reports sloppily surrendered during discovery and now published in Westword. Eric was supposed to comply whether in custody or homeless, or be found in contempt.

Brandt was put back en route to Denver while attorneys were asked to set the upcoming court dates. Suddenly Eric’s transport was ordered to return so that the Westminster prosecutor could motion to revoke Eric’s multiple bonds on account of his new felony charges in Denver. Fortunately the bond revocation hearing was set for Sept 2 to allow David Lane time to subpoena witnesses. This date will also follow the Aug 31 hearing in Denver where Lane has subpoenaed the Denver DA to account for the unconstitutional train wreck.

Now back at Denver Jail, Eric is being kept overnight with the excuse that the pretrial services office was closed and doesn’t reopen until 8AM. Eric Brandt has been incarcerated since Monday afternoon, his bond met, his tattoo assuring he can’t be confused for anyone else. He’s front and center today on the Denver Post and Westword, but the city’s top law enforcers can still pretend to delay his release on technicalities. They spent eighteen hours “running his fingerprints” when everyone in downtown Denver can recognize Eric Brandt a block away, three, when he’s got his sign.

Eric Brandt and the horrible, very bad judge.


WESTMINSTER, COLORADO- Eric Brandt was so sure he was going to jail he got a tattoo. The one-man-band of protest movements had court on August 3rd before Westminster Associate Judge Paul D. Basso, who’d declined on a technicality to give Brandt a jury trial. Eric calls him “Judge Fatso” and lampoons Basso on the courthouse steps and so didn’t expect more than a brisk push into jail. Knowing they’d take his “Fuck Cops” t-shirt, Eric got a hasty tattoo. “It hurt. A LOT” said Eric, who did not intend to cease his protest behind bars. It’s the identical logo, placed just below the sleeve-length of a jail smock, faced forward on the arm he extends to shake hands. Eric’s lawyer, the formidable David Lane, joked that he was stung by Eric’s lack of faith in his attorney.

But Eric Brandt has suffered for two years battling alone against the whims of Westminster injustice. He’s served jail time, been beaten, threatened, tasered so many times the seizures it induces no longer make him pee. And when Judge Basso took the bench the courtroom audience got to see the kangaroo court prepared for Westminster’s public enemy number one. Even David Lane’s sober motions and objections bounced off the stubborn hanging judge.

Ultimately Judge Basso was smart enough to know he had to grant a continuance because discovery was only granted ten minutes before the session started. Discovery included internal affairs investigations of Sergeant Buckner, Eric’s repeat accuser and frequent assailant. Judge Basso asked the sergeant if he’d signed off on their release. “Objection! You’re not his lawyer!” Judge Basso ordered that the documents be surrendered to the court until he’d ruled on their relevance. “Objection!” The audience echoed “WTF!”

David Lane’s motions to dismiss, and for a special prosecutor, and for the judge to recuse himself for interposing himself as advocate for the city, were ignored. Each time the civil liberties expert cited legal precedence, Judge Basso would answer “it’s been a while since I’ve read that one, but I remember its meaning differently.” The city attorney and judge made clumsy attempts to feed each other cues.

Eric Brandt was forced to wave speedy trial in exchange for his continuance, to give his attorney time to peruse the discovery evidence. David Lane objected that “my client has to choose which constitutional right to sacrifice.”

Westminster had hoped to jail Eric Brandt this week to prevent him from getting on this year’s ballot for the city council election. They had to let him walk. A powerful attorney and a roomful of spectators got in the way of someone’s Judge Roy Bean act.

Eric was in tears as he thanked his supporters. His next case is Thursday, August 6, same accusers, same arresting officer. Same crime, telling cops to go fuck themselves. Eric will need the same court support. Trust me it’s entertaining. Between Brandt and Lane, there is no end to the laughter, but I had no idea municipal court would be so suspenseful. The best lawyer around meets his match against Tweedle Dumb.

Eric Brandt has dozens of cases pending in Westminster. The hope is that the provincial berg will figure out it has treed the wrong bear. They’re up against the First Amendment and two tireless defenders.

UPDATE: Eric’s August 6th court date has been continued, it’s now TBA. His next scheduled jury trial is August 13 although word is it will be postponed as well. A motions hearing now set for Wednesday August 12 will probably decide the fate of all of Eric Brandt’s cases. I’m thinking, when a city gives less than a day’s notice to cancel a jury trial, they’re probably doing some heavy thinking. Congratulations Eric!

Eric Brandt found not guilty of petty complaints of Westminster Colorado. He’s being denied a jury at next trial.

Eric Brandt aka Fuck Cops
WESTMINSTER, COLORADO- Homeless veteran Eric Brandt has been arrested 36 times by police officers angry about his “fuck cops” sign, often the arrests are violent. So far Eric has beat the charges but the City of Westminster is gunning for him. Though Eric is now represented by civil liberty specialist David Lane, city officials, DAs, cops, and prosecutors converge on Eric’s court appearances determined to slip their fuck-cops problem into a jail cell. They may yet succeed, but Eric’s chances improve when the judges see he has public support. Though Eric’s message is characterized as repugnant in a court of law, in reality people honk and wave and ask to have their picture taken with Eric. To no-one else’s surprise, “fuck cops” resonates, especially as Denver cops keep killing unarmed arrestees. Eric won his July 23 jury trial, but he has upcoming court dates August 3, August 6, and August 13, to name just the next three. If Westminster can jail Eric for just one of these cases, they can keep him off the ballot where he’s running for city council looking to represent the homeless constituency. Come see the spectacle that is the usually incomparable David Lane sharing the spotlight with scene-stealing Eric Brandt, running hilarious circles around his dimwitted accusers. A guaranteed laugh-fest at the expense of the much-embarrassed Westminster grumps.

The next three trials will be held at the Westminster Municipal Court, at 72nd & Federal, just south of Highway-36. All start at 8:30am. At the August 3rd trial the judge is denying Eric the right to a jury…