Eric Bramwell seems to prove that a man will do anything for a universal remote. He is not however a deranged couch potato as much as a really bad criminal.
The Illinois man has been sentenced to 22 years in prison after a DNA sample tied him to the theft of a remote from a Wheaton apartment building. The sample was found in a glove that Bramwell, 35, left behind. His DNA was part of the state database of convicted felons. The long sentence is driven by a long criminal record and he could have been sentenced to 30 years. Bramwell is accused of a string of thefts of both televisions and remotes in various buildings.
14 thoughts on “Can You Guess What This Man Was Charged With?”
I have had a love/hate relationship with remotes every since my brother got the first universal remote years ago – a huge beast that I managed to deprogram the first time I used it.
I get how frustrating it can be when you cannot find the remote. With cable we can’t just walk up to the TV and manually change the channel anymore. At least, I don’t think we can. Can you change the channel directly on the DVR receiver?
In any case, does Illinois have something similar to CA’s third strike law, where even a minor third offense can send someone away for life? Or are there enhancements added on after you’ve been caught B&E for the umpteenth time no matter what you steal? 22 years for stealing a remote seems quite long, considering people in CA don’t seem to serve any time for anything short of murder. And even then they’d get out on parole before 22 years. Even Charles Manson comes up for parole occasionally. As an aside, Manson is reportedly in failing health due to gastrointestinal bleeding, and deemed too weak for surgery. If true, then good riddance to the shabby maniac who orchestrated the murder of pregnant Sharon Tate, among others.
I am not familiar with Illinois’ sentencing guidelines but in general what many people fail to recognize is that it is not just the remote that is stolen, it likely is also a burglary or other felony crime that triggers a stiff sentence for a career felon who “just doesn’t get it” figuratively speaking. In fact, you get a lot of the “he only stole a candy bar” argument for people who complain of arbitrary sentencing who are ignorant to, or choose not to recognize, that the theft involves more aggravators than just a misdemeanor theft.
One of the reasons for the eliminations on the cable box is that adding buttons adds cost to the device, whereas with a remote the device only needs an antenna or light gatherer to receive the inputs and then it can rely on cheap software programming to perform the action requested by the user. I agree it is annoying, since depending on the remote is a hassle.
“I am not familiar with Illinois’ sentencing guidelines but in general what many people fail to recognize is that it is not just the remote that is stolen, it likely is also a burglary or other felony crime that triggers a stiff sentence for a career felon who “just doesn’t get it” figuratively speaking. In fact, you get a lot of the “he only stole a candy bar” argument for people who complain of arbitrary sentencing who are ignorant to, or choose not to recognize, that the theft involves more aggravators than just a misdemeanor theft…”
Undoubtedly he plead guilty to a lesser charge. It’s what irks me about how Barack Obama keeps claiming he is only granting clemency to non-violent drug offenders. In reality, they’re not non-violent. You simply can’t reduce the prison population to the degree the “mass incarceration” advocates would lead you to believe without releasing violent offenders. It’s simply a myth that non-violent drug offenders are being locked up en masse. States have done their own reforms.
“In light of this, experts on America’s prison system are beginning to sound an alarm: If reform-minded politicians continue to limit the prison-reduction discussion to nonviolent offenders and refuse to take up the more difficult work of re-evaluating harsh sentencing policies for people convicted of more serious crimes like armed robbery, rape, and murder, then the country’s prison population will never fall very far.
“Lots of people think that 80 percent of the people who are locked up are there for low-level drug offenses, and that’s not even close to being true,” Marc Mauer, the executive director of the Sentencing Project, a nonprofit that advocates for reducing the prison population, told me this week. “Half the people in state prisons today have been convicted of a violent offense. That’s what they’re serving time for,” he said. “There’s going to be an inherent limitation on how much of a reduction in incarceration we can achieve if we’re not even considering them.”
You might be wondering, quite reasonably: Why would we even want to prevail over that “inherent limitation”? Yes, too many Americans are in prison. But prisons exist for a reason—to remove violent criminals from the streets and to punish them for the violence they’ve committed…”
Note my source. I could have cited other sources, but I wanted to get as far away from anything that would appear to simply be confirming my biases.
By and large we are locking people up who need to pay a debt to society. That said, I don’t know if we are punishing people appropriately. I came across an interesting fact the other day. In Greenland prisoners not only are eligible to get get furloughs, they can even check out rifles from government arsenals and go hunting with their relatives. They have to be accompanied by a a prison guard, though. The idea, apparently, is not to isolate the from communal life more than they have to.
I was reminded of this the other day when I saw a vid of Tucker Carlson debating an individual who advocates for restoring the vote to felons. And Carlson brought up the very good point that we shouldn’t trust felons with the vote if we can’t trust them with firearms. If we are going to restore their rights, restore all of them. If they have been rehabilitated, then they’re rehabilitated. Let them enjoy full citizenship. But if they haven’t been rehabilitated, if they can’t be trusted with firearms, then they can’t be trusted to choose their leaders.
To be fair, the Danes only do this in Greenland. Try getting a firearm in Denmark proper, even if you haven’t been convicted of a crime.
This story tells the benefits of DNA, and its benevolent usefulness in solving crimes.
What this story does NOT tell is the danger DNA poses to free people. The taking of DNA from suspects – or those merely arrested and never charged/prosecuted or even exonerated – turns our very bodily essence into evidence against us (in violation of the 5A).
Yesterday, innocent persons charged that police planted contraband to ‘frame’ them. Tomorrow it will be DNA (or has that already happened?).
He should have to go to nursing homes and retirement communities and program remotes for the elderly for at least a year.
22 years for stealing a remote ??
Jay S – if he stole my remote he would die!!!
I wear the labels off my remote buttons every so often, so I wish someone WOULD steal them.
If you rack up enough points, in some states, you’ll get life for stealing a slice of pizza.
Does he have a fetish?
The likes of Mnuchins walking around free and being nominated to be in charge of the hen house.
And the tattooed dude getting 2 dozen
Years for a crime popularized in the
70’s and 80’s.
I no longer know what to think….
Guilt by reason of tatoo.
Yeah, I never would have guessed about the “long criminal record.” Not in a million years.
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