Convicted firearm thief Todd R. Brown said spending time in a locked-down treatment facility "rewired my thinking" and gave him tools he didn't have earlier to address his drug addiction.
"I've got a clear head," the 32-year-old defendant told the court Monday. "I've come a long way from where I was."
Brown also said he has "cut all ties" with the people with whom he used to associate. Armed with a "really good support group" now, he shared how he planned to attend local NA meetings and has a possible sponsor.
The defendant said he wanted the chance to prove he's a different person than before he was in court-ordered treatment.
Huron County Common Pleas Judge Jim Conway, however, sentenced Brown to 18 months in prison for being kicked out of a community-based corrections facility Oct. 8. Defendants spend four to six months in a CBCF, a form of prison which focuses on substance abuse treatment and education.
Brown's offense constituted a probation violation and he received the maximum punishment Monday.
Conway credited Brown with doing "some good things" at the CBCF he entered April 23. The defendant earned five certificates, including completing anger management and motivation groups.
"I'd like you to continue what you've started and not fall back," Conway told him.
Brown was approved for the risk reduction program, meaning he can have 20 percent of his sentence shaved off if he successfully completes various prison programs. The judge also credited Brown with already serving about 11 months behind bars.
In mid-January, Brown pleaded guilty to theft of a firearm in exchange for the dismissal of one count of burglary.
The Huron County Sheriff's Office investigated the Sept. 18, 2012 drug-related crime on Baseline Road in Greenwich Township. Brown was arrested later at a Mansfield hotel, where a detective located Brown with the help of the Mansfield Police Department. Authorities recovered several stolen firearms and a large amount of cash.
The court ordered Brown to a CBCF in mid-March. Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Daivia Kasper said Brown was kicked out for failing to comply with the policies, specifically "physical aggression toward another client who was there."
Huron County Public Defender David Longo shared Brown's perspective of the incident with the court Monday. Longo said Brown and another CBCF client pantomimed tripping and kicking each other, but stressed there was no actual fight.
"He (Brown) was nine days short of graduating," the public defender added.
Addressing an allegation of alcohol abuse while Brown was at the CBCF, Longo said the defendant drank during a family function while out "on a pass" and Brown's blood-alcohol-content level tested well below the legal limit of .08 percent. Longo said by the time Brown was tested at the CBCF, his BAC was zero.
"That's not drunk by any means," added Longo, who said he understands that drinking alcohol isn't tolerated at CBCFs.