Pontiac court bomb suspect waives right to hearing

Mike Martindale
DetroitNews-Unknown

Pontiac — A 24-year-old man Pontiac man who allegedly threatened to blow up the Oakland Circuit Courthouse and to kill Judge Lisa Gorcyca waived his right to a probable cause hearing Thursday in Pontiac 50th District Court.

Anthony Jeffrey Brodie is charged with making a false report or threat of terrorism, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Brodie was allegedly fearful Gorcyca would not rule in his favor in a pending custody battle for his son, according to investigators.

After conferring briefly with his court-appointed attorney, Brodie told Pontiac District Judge Michael Martinez he was voluntarily waiving his right to a hearing and ready to go on to the next phase, a preliminary examination in district court. Martinez, who remanded Brodie back to the Oakland County Jail in lieu of $500,000 cash surety bond, set a 1:30 p.m. exam for Oct. 20.

Brodie, manacled and dressed in a jail orange jump suit, nodded quietly at several relatives, including his father, before he was escorted back to jail.

Outside the courtroom, Brodie’s attorney, Mitchell Ribitwer, noted it is a difficult case — for various reasons.

“I heard several attorneys declined to represent him,” Ribitwer said. “It’s especially hard to defend someone who is accused of threatening people, including judges, who you not only know but also may have to go up before on other cases.

“My position is everyone — regardless of what they are charged with doing — deserves representation and someone to be an advocate for them in court and work in their best interests,” he said. “I plan to do exactly that.”

Ribitwer, a veteran defense attorney who has handled numerous high-profile criminal cases, said he was just recently appointed to be Brodie’s attorney and hasn’t had the opportunity to sit down with him and discuss the charges.

Investigators with the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office said Brodie told an acquaintance on Sept. 4 he would kill Gorcyca and blow up the Oakland Circuit Court building, where his divorce and custody case has unfolded since 2012.

Brodie said was “ready and willing to go to war” and had been researching Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City bombing.

According to investigators, Brodie “agreed with McVeigh’s view on the government.”

Brodie, a paint store salesman who received a general discharge from the U.S. Navy, has been the subject of personal protection orders from his ex-wife, her mother and a friend over the past five years. In each case, the 5-foot-9, 135-pound Brodie allegedly threatened everyone with physical harm, even death. In one case, a friend claimed he had been physically assaulted by Brodie, who was never charged in the incident.

Both Brodie and his ex-wife have complained each other are unfit parents and Brodie was angry the court was allegedly not enforcing joint custody rules which permitted him visitation with his 4-year-old son. He also complained his ex-wife, who had been evicted from her apartment, had abandoned her parental responsibility and left the boy in her mother’s care.

An April 2016 letter to the court written by a family counselor said Brodie reported a history ADHD and taking Adderall to control symptoms and noted “there is a lengthy history of poor impulse control and anger management issues with respect to his relationship with his ex-wife and her mother.”

ADHD is short for attention deficit hyperactivity defect, a treatable medical condition that affects an estimated 17 million children and adults in the U.S.

mmartindale@detroitnews.com

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