You've been warned: Stealing something as seemingly inconsequential as a TV remote control can result in a hefty sentencing by county courts. Twenty-two years in jail, to be exact.
Eric Bramwell of Melrose Park, a neighborhood of Chicago, will officially serve nearly two dozen years behind bars after having been found guilty of burglary in November last year, the Chicago Tribune reports. He had stolen the universal remote to a television set in an apartment complex in August 2015.
While that steep sentence may seem outrageous, Bramwell's punishment is based on years of taking remotes, as identified by a felony database after he accidentally dropped a glove at the complex, revealing his DNA. In fact, according to prosecutors, Bramwell stole remotes and televisions at six other complexes.
Because of this, Bramwell was eligible for an extended sentence, and he won't be able to request parole until halfway through his current 22-year sentence.
"Mr. Bramwell's illegal activity and his history have finally caught up with him. Regardless of what was stolen, Mr. Bramwell repeatedly thumbed his nose at the law," State's Attorney Robert Berlin said. "He took what he wanted time and time again and expected to avoid the consequences."
While penalty for theft is certainly warranted — especially for repeated incidents — one must wonder why a convicted sex offender such as Brock Turner was sentenced to six months in jail. For the record, Turner was found guilty of intending to commit rape after sexually assaulting an unconscious woman behind a dumpster, and he served only three months.
The system, it seems, is more than a little screwed up.
Banner/thumbnail credit: Flickr, Iain Watson