The Plight of Brian Hill and the Injustice of Autism.

brianHillBrian Hill was a blogger who reported on alternative news. I got to know Brian Hill when I was following the notorious copyright trolling outfit Righthaven who filed suit against Brian for copyright infringement for posting an image of a TSA agent groping a passenger. Later Righthaven dismissed the suit after Brian Hill proved to be a PR disaster for them. He was instrumental in bringing them down. Brian’s Righthaven story was featured in the New York Times. 

Brian has autism and a severe form of Brittle Diabetes. He is extremely prone to seizures that occur often. He is unable to work and his mother who takes care of him cannot work because he requires round-the-clock care. He survives on $700 a month on an SSI check in which Righthaven illegally threatened to garnish.

Now Brian has a far worse problem. Besides upsetting the politically well connected people who created Righthaven he also upset some local North Carolina politicians with his reporting. Over a year ago his home was raided and according to the search warrant he was suspected of downloading numerous movies and images containing child pornography. The investigators admitted in the search warrant they were movies they were very familiar with and even described them in detail in the search warrant.

The probable cause that was used to obtain the search warrant was based on nothing more than an IP address. IP addresses have been ruled in several court cases to be insufficient evidence in identifying an actual computer user in cases regarding p2p networks and piracy. In the police raid they took every computer and related devices in the house including thumb drives and CDs.  Over a year went by and neither the local officials nor the State of North Carolina filed charges and told Brian’s family no charges were to be filed and that he could come get his stuff. Brian went into the hospital so he was not able to retrieve them but a family member called the police dept who told him the Dept of Homeland Security had seized all the items. The family received a call from Homeland Security who said they had an arrest warrant for Brian and according to one family member the agent threatened to rip Brian out of his hospital bed if necessary. A promise they kept.

Brian was literally yanked out of his hospital bed on the Friday before Christmas. A time where most people are on vacation and would garner the least amount of media attention. One year and four months after the raid Brian was placed in a North Carolina detention center where according to the family they only gave him half the insulin he needed and served him food full of carbs. Food that could have killed him in which he declined to eat putting his health at even greater risk. He was told they had no other kind of food to feed him. It was 5 days before they allowed him to see a doctor. By then his blood sugar was dangerously high.

None of the movies the investigators described in such odd detail in the original search warrant were found. Movies that were so graphically detailed in which investigators admitted they had watched and were very familiar with. Brian was charged with a single image that prompted the judge to deny bail and declare him a threat to society even though he went a year and four months without incident and was not a flight risk. According to DOJ statistics only 5% of Federal defendants are denied bail outright and forced to stay in jail for the duration and that is reserved for the worst of the worst and those who are an imminent danger or likely to flee. Brian is being treated differently than other defendants for similar charges.

The judge in the bail hearing seemed to be completely unsympathetic to his autism or health concerns and did not even include an autism advocate or seek information on how to deal with an autistic defendant or attempt to understand Brian’s disabilities. (Please read Brian’s Mother’s words regarding this below).  The judge denied him bail even though keeping him in jail could prove deadly even though bail has been granted to far worse offenders including a man found with child pornography that worked for the local police dept. The US Attorney said he would only release him under the Adam Walsh Act which would be impossible for Brian to comply with since he lived in an apartment building and would be within 1000 feet of a minor. No other relative could take him either because of the restrictions or places suitable to tend to his health issues. Brian was given a court appointed lawyer who was unable to convince the judge that Brian’s life was in danger and he was not a threat or flight risk.

So far they have moved him around three times without even notifying his family or his lawyer. To someone suffering from autism changes in environments can be extremely disorienting and upsetting.  It is if the authorities are intentionally trying to exacerbate the problems associated with autism and diabetes.

Brian spoke out against the government and warned about our loss of freedom. His blog has now been shut down that once got thousands of hits per day. If convicted he will go to prison for a long time as a sex offender. He will never be able to go on the Internet again or even own a computer and lose all disability benefits including SSI and foodstamps. He has been silenced and may not even survive at all because he offended some powerful people. The people he warned others about in his blog.

These are the words of his mother…

Autism and Law Enforcement

On December 20th on a cold autumn day my son was arrested by Homeland Security from a hospital in Virginia. The arrest warrant claimed that he had an illegal file on his computer. My son has mild autism, but the horror of our U.S. legal system is that his disability is not recognized by any of the law enforcement agencies. In fact, autistic people are treated just the way everyone else is within the legal system. They are expected to understand the legal process and navigate through all the terminology and rules on their own and without any kind of autism advocate or family to help them through the process. He was forcibly taken away from his family and friends and was left to deal with everything on his own accord. I have been his parent and caretaker for the last 23 years and I have always been there to take care of his health care needs and school problems that always inevitably presented themselves throughout the years he was in the public school system. Now after 23 years of working sometimes around the clock to help my son with severe insulin reactions, seizures and other autistic related problems that have come up over the years; I am suddenly unable to care for my son. You can’t even begin to imagine the horrible worry and anxiety that I am going through at this time, because I can’t be there to help him anymore. Brian has been unable to learn how to drive, to work on a job or to pay bills and live independently. I have taken care of him all of these years, and now the jail system has become his caretakers. Will they understand how to deal with his meltdowns due to his lack of understanding because of a quick transition or because he doesn’t understand their rules? I think not. The problem is that not many law enforcement agencies are prepared to deal with people with autism. That should be a concern for every parent with a child that has autism.

Currently, my son Brian David Hill sits in a jail all alone in North Carolina waiting to prove his innocence in the courtroom. There is no one there to speak on his behalf and with his communication problems associated with autism, I wonder if he will understand all the rules in the jail. He understands writing much better than verbal commands, but none of the jail guards or law enforcement agencies that work with him have probably ever been trained to work with someone with autism. Is this not a travesty that the justice system with the US courts and law enforcement agencies don’t know how to deal with an autistic person? It seems obvious that Brian will not get an equal treatment or justice within the US legal system, because the system treats everyone the same regardless of whether the person has a disability within the autism spectrum. For now, people like my son Brian and other autistic adults are left to fend for themselves within a system that seems unequipped and ignorant to deal with their communication and behavioral handicaps. May God help them all!

“You can judge a society by how well it treats its prisoners”. -Fyodor Dostoevsky

Read Before Its News
Read The Unjustified America Brian Hill:

, , , , , ,

  1. #1 by Larry Bergan on January 4, 2014 - 9:15 pm

    “Throw away the key” justice only applies to the poor.

    Live with it.

  2. #2 by Ken Bingham on January 4, 2014 - 10:16 pm

    You really want to live with it Larry?

  3. #3 by Larry Bergan on January 4, 2014 - 11:17 pm

    Hell no! But injustice is what it is!

    I will know it’s over when Latinos and Blacks can vote without running through hoops – HELL – when I know MY vote is being counted!

  4. #4 by Larry Bergan on January 4, 2014 - 11:23 pm

    I had to show up with my birth certificate and social security card to get my drivers license and vote last time, even though I’ve voted for over 30 years. I’ve never had to do that before.

    Republicans are making it harder for people to vote. Why is that?

  5. #5 by Larry Bergan on January 4, 2014 - 11:29 pm

    By the way: autism seems to be an asset, rather then a hindrance from what we’re learning.

  6. #6 by Ken Bingham on January 5, 2014 - 12:21 am

    Yes in many cases except in our legal system where they are way over represented and misunderstood.

  7. #7 by Nathan Erkkila on January 5, 2014 - 4:13 am

    It seems very harsh of a punishment to act in favor of a copyright troll company that is dead in the water and only rakes in a few million a year, judging by the website tracking their lawsuits.

  8. #8 by Richard Warnick on January 5, 2014 - 11:58 am

    Thanks to the Orwellian “Homeland Security,” NSA et al. the U.S. government has put in place “a turnkey totalitarian state,” in the words of former senior NSA officer William Binney. In Brian Hill’s case, they apparently decided to turn the key.

  9. #10 by Ken Bingham on January 8, 2014 - 5:52 am

    Brian is now being held under a 23 hour a day lockdown in maximum security He has been convicted of nothing and is only awaiting trial. He is unable to call or communicate with his family. His family has not heard from him since Thursday Jan 2nd.

    Not even terrorists are treated this way.

  10. #11 by Mary Chapin on January 8, 2014 - 8:42 pm

    This is so sad. Has anyone tried starting a petition on

(will not be published)

%d bloggers like this: