08/06/08 — Kidnapping suspect might fight extradition

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Kidnapping suspect might fight extradition

By Nick Hiltunen
Published in News on August 6, 2008 1:37 PM

A South Herman Street man accused of kidnapping his 2-year-old daughter from Massachusetts might fight extradition, court records show.

Joel Keith Brown, 43, turned himself in after a statewide "Amber Alert," on Friday and was being held without privilege of bond.

Police in Massachusetts allege that Brown took his daughter, Justice Brown, from a car parked outside her Chicopee, Mass. day care center.

On Friday, he waived a court-appointed attorney and did not ask to represent himself.

The decision could indicate he intends to hire his own representation to fight a forced return to Chicopee, a few hundred miles east of Boston.

Court record show a probable cause hearing is scheduled for Aug. 19.

Temporary custody had been granted to the girl's mother, Robin J. Hilewitz-Brown, on July 31 by Massachusetts probate judge David M. Fuller, court records show.

The 2-year-old was expected to return to Ms. Hilewitz-Brown, police said.

Court records show Brown is charged with reckless endangerment of a child and kidnapping of a minor by a relative.

Brown has been charged various traffic violations and other offenses in the past. However, he was found not guilty of all charges against him, court records show.

In a 1987 trial, he was found not guilty by a jury of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill and inflicting serious injury. In 1990, he was found not guilty of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury and not guilty of committing malicious assault in secret.

A detective at the Chicopee police department forwarded all requests for comment to the Hampden County District Attorney. An assistant district attorney in Hampden County did not immediately return phone calls on Tuesday or early today.