Lengthy gun sentence affirmed in 2011 hotel standoff

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A federal prison sentence of more than 33 years was upheld Monday for a career criminal convicted of leading police on a chase, assaulting an officer until he lost consciousness and staging an armed, four-hour standoff at an Indianapolis hotel in August 2011.

Jamel H. Brown was sentenced to 400 months in prison after he pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of a firearm, which is well in excess of sentencing guidelines. Numerous other counts were continued until after sentencing on the firearm charge.

Brown failed to convince the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals that federal criminal trial rules required the District Court for the Southern District of Indiana to rule on any disputed matter in a presentence report before sentencing. Judge Sarah Evans Barker satisfied requirements in consideration of the presentence report, the court ruled in United States of America v. Jamel H. Brown, 12-3413.

“After hearing from the defendant and listening to the evidence presented by the government, the judge made several statements that confirmed her acceptance of the probation officer’s version of the facts. In addressing the ‘horrific’ nature of the offense at issue, the judge stated that Brown had driven a car through a heavily trafficked area ‘really without regard to anybody else,’ and that his assault on the officer was ‘breathtaking,’” Judge Joel M. Flaum wrote for the court.

Barker “acknowledged that Brown had pointed the firearm at the witnesses in the hotel parking lot ‘and by some unbelievable good fortune’ the gun malfunctioned” when Brown pulled the trigger of a Tec-9 semiautomatic handgun, Flaum wrote. “When the gun malfunctioned, (Barker) stated that Brown continued with his attempted escape, shattering a window in the back of the hotel and then ‘terrorizing’ the people inside while looking for a place to hide.”

“What is essential is that the district judge articulated her view of the disputed facts and explained how they impacted her ultimate sentencing determination,” he continued. “We find no error in the district court’s resolution of the disputed facts or its calculation of Brown’s guidelines range for sentencing.”


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  1. I commend Joe for standing up to this tyrant attorney! You ask why? Well I’m one of David Steele victims. I was in desperate need of legal help to protect my child, David saw an opportunity, and he demanded I pay him $3000. Cash. As I received motions and orders from court he did nothing! After weeks of emails asking him to address the legal issues, he responded by saying he was “on vacation “and I should be so lucky to have “my attorney” reply. Finally after lie on top of lie I asked for a full refund, which he refused. He then sent me “bills” for things he never did, such as, his appearance in the case and later claimed he withdrew. He never filed one document / motion for my case! When I finally demanded he refund my money he then turn to threats which scared my family for our lives. It seem unreal we couldn’t believe this guy. I am now over $100,000 in debt digging out of the legal mess he caused my family. Later I was finally able to hire another law office. I met Joe and we worked diligently on my case. I soon learn Joe had a passion for helping people. As anyone who has been through a legal battle it is exhausting. Joe was always more than happy to help or address an issue. Joe was knowledgeable about all my concerns at the same time he was able to reduce the stress and anxieties of my case. He would stay late and come in early, he always went the extra mile to help in any way he could. I can only imagine what Joe and his family has been through, my prayers go out to him and all the victims.

  2. Steele did more than what is listed too. He purposely sought out to ruin me, calling potential employers and then lied about me alleging all kinds of things including kidnapping. None of his allegations were true. If you are in need of an ethical and very knowledgeable family law paralegal, perhaps someone could post their contact information. Ethics cannot be purchased, either your paralegal has them or they do not.

  3. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  4. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  5. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise