Erik Brown Acquitted On All Counts in Catalytic Converter Case

A Superior Court of California, County of Sacramento acquitted former Firehouse Mufflers owner Erik Brown on all 15 charges related to his 2013 arrest for allegedly accepting stolen catalytic converters and improper coding and recording of equipment.
By: Firehouse Mufflers
 
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Aug. 5, 2015 - PRLog -- A Superior Court of California, County of Sacramento, on Friday, July 31, 2015, acquitted former Firehouse Mufflers owner Erik Brown on all 15 charges related to his September, 2013 arrest for allegedly accepting stolen catalytic converters and improper coding and recording of equipment.

According to the Sacramento Police Department, the arrest had been the result of an extensive investigation by the department’s Metal Theft Task Force in which supposed stolen catalytic converters were purchased by the business from undercover officers.

After the verdict was read, Judge Ernest Sawtelle noted that this was the first time in his career that he had given an instruction advising jurors that the police and district attorney’s office had deliberately withheld information from the defense.

According to Brown’s attorney, Amber Lunsford of Lunsford Legal Group, “We want to thank the jury for their time and careful consideration of the evidence. I believe they recognized early on that the prosecution’s case was faulty from the start. The Auto Theft Task Force, Building Codes & Enforcement, and the Fire Marshall were all involved during service of the search warrant and they could not find any evidence of illegal activity.”

The case received widespread attention due to the high incidence of catalytic converter thefts in the area. Virtually all of Sacramento’s major media outlets covered the arrest, which included live aerial shots of Brown’s business establishment along Marysville Boulevard. Catalytic converters were laid out in the workbay of Firehouse Exhaust and presented to the media as evidence of stolen catalytic converters.  Not a single catalytic converter could be shown to have been stolen and Mr. Brown had documentation for each and every one.

Lunsford continued, “As a result of an undercover operation motivated more by the need to make arrests related to catalytic converters than uncovering the truth, the presumptions of an overzealous District Attorney’s Office, and the media, an innocent man has lost his business and his livelihood.”

Firehouse Muffler Store Manager William Lorch, was also acquitted of all charges.

For more information, contact Jean Arlene at 856-810-0400.

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Source:Firehouse Mufflers
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Tags:Erik Brown, Firehouse Mufflers, Stolen Catalytic Converters
Industry:Automotive, Legal
Location:Sacramento - California - United States
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