BY MELANIE BUCK & LEANN DILBECK –
Greg Brewer was able to post bond and was released at approximately 6 p.m. this evening after being arrested earlier today in the Polk County Circuit Courtroom. According to family members, Greg was unable to contain his emotions towards his daughter’s rapist and murderer, Karl D. Roberts.
Appearing for his own competency hearing, death row inmate Roberts was present today in the same courtroom that he was convicted for the rape and murder of his then 12-year old niece, Andi Brewer, and the same courtroom where just one year ago he stated, “I’m ready to go.” After lunch, he began conversing with family members prior to court being called back into session. At which time, Andi’s grandmother, Ann Brewer, said a family member became upset and her son and Andi’s father, Greg, went to console them. Ann said Roberts provoked Greg when he told him “It’s all going to be ok.” Greg crossed the threshold to get to Roberts but was stopped abruptly by deputies. Ann told The Pulse, “He never got to lay his hands on him [Roberts] but he was within inches before the deputies tackled him.”
She went on, “It’s not going to be ok! Andi can’t be brought back! For 15 years this has been going on… we’ve fed him longer than she lived!” The distraught grandmother spoke of the heartbreak that the family goes through every time Roberts goes back before the court.
Roberts was initially convicted in May 2000 for the 1999 rape and strangulation murder of his 12-year old niece (by marriage) Andi Brewer. He was sentenced to die by lethal injection.
Roberts waived his right to challenge his conviction and sentence in 2000 in Polk County Circuit Court.
As is customary in death penalty cases, the Arkansas Supreme Court reviewed the case for any errors that may have occurred in the trial courts (Polk County Circuit Court).
On May 20, 2003, Roberts appeared in Polk County Circuit Court and told the Court, “I don’t think a guilty person should be allowed to live or he should at least accept responsibility, his punishment whatever it may be.” The Circuit Judge asked Roberts if he understood that he was choosing death over life. Roberts answered, “Yes, sir.” The Circuit Court held this to be a valid waiver of Roberts’ right to pursue any further appeals.
However, just hours before he was scheduled for execution in January 2004, Roberts allowed his attorneys to seek an appeal and received a stay of execution. Ultimately, the Arkansas Supreme Court re-opened his case on February 14, 2013 following numerous legal actions and delays.
While Roberts was on the stand in September 2013, Judge Looney asked him about a letter he (Roberts) had written to a federal judge that had been ordered sealed. Looney respected the request and did not read the letter but asked Roberts about certain points in the letter. Roberts confirmed that he did not want the process to be delayed anymore and cited that he didn’t want to bring any more heartache to himself or his family to an already grievous situation.
Prosecuting Attorney Andy Riner asked Roberts on the stand when he appeared in Polk County Circuit Court September 18, 2013 if his decision to seek the appeal was “the right one,” in which, Roberts replied, “After everything me and my family has suffered through…no it wasn’t.”
Judge Looney explained that while Roberts has fully expressed that he doesn’t want to pursue the appeal, the Arkansas Supreme Court has ordered that a more recent mental evaluation must be performed that concludes Roberts understands that he is choosing death over life. The mental evaluation that proved he was fit to stand trial is not sufficient or recent enough to satisfy the Arkansas Supreme Court.
Today’s hearing was the next step with expert witnesses testifying of their findings.
Following today’s outburst, Judge Looney closed the courtroom to the public but did say that he only had two more days in office and would render his verdict before his term is over.
Ann told The Pulse that the family feels they are at their breaking point. She expressed her frustration over their family continually being told not to speak to Roberts. However, Roberts was allowed to speak to them, provoking her son, resulting in a Battery in the 3rd Degree misdemeanor charge for the man who lost his 12-year old daughter. Greg also lost his wife, Tiffany, just a few months earlier this year. But for tonight, he is at home caring for their 3-year old daughter.