Pat McBrayer had his day in court, but he didn’t get to argue his case the way he wanted. And he lost.
The City of Kingman took McBrayer to trial for his refusal to remove a bright yellow-colored shipping container on his odd-shaped undeveloped property parcel in the 600 block of Hall St.
McBrayer wanted to show that the city had engaged in inconsistent and selective enforcement by citing him, while ignoring similar cargo container placement violations on other property throughout Kingman. But Judge Bill Burrows took that defense away from McBrayer during a pre-trial conference.
Judge Burrows told McBrayer there were other “forums” for him to argue selective enforcement, but that the trial would focus strictly on the violation in question on his property.
McBrayer reverted to plan B at his July 22 trial. McBrayer argued that the container was in compliance with city ordinance when placed on the parcel, and only became non-compliant when the city changed the regulation.
“The government can’t create a new law to make me guilty,” McBrayer said.
Judge Burrows, however, ruled that the box was always in violation of the ordinance because it was not placed behind a building or blocked from view of the street by an eight foot high sight obstructive fence.
“It is my judgment that you are guilty of a violation and a public nuisance, class 1 misdemeanor,” Burrows said.
City prosecutor Lee Hocking said McBrayer was a “bad neighbor” for refusing to remove the container he called “a monstrosity”.
“It’s garish. It’s ugly,” Hocking said. “This conex (box) needs to go and he needs to be ordered to do it.”
Judge Burrows ordered McBrayer to have the container removed from the property and he placed McBrayer on probation for two years. Burrows also imposed nearly $4,600 in fines, fees and surcharges but gave McBrayer an early payment incentive reducing his out of pocket penalty to $500.