Burleigh County judge grants post-conviction re-trial in GSI case

BISMARCK, N.D. - A Burleigh County judge granted post-conviction relief for a man who was sentenced on two gross sexual imposition charges in 2016.

Twenty-six-year-old Michael Brewer was convicted after a jury found him guilty of touching two children at a family gathering at a Bismarck hotel pool. Brewer denied it.

According the Burleigh County Sheriff’s Department, the North Dakota State Penitentiary called them after the judge made her order and said Brewer would be released in 40 minutes.

Jeff Ball with the BCSO says deputies got there in 20 minutes and took him to court, and later booked him at the Burleigh Morton Detention Center. Where he is being held without bond.

A post-conviction means they’ll challenge the conviction. According to court records, the judge granted the relief and it says a retrial is needed.

In 2017, Brewer appealed his case to the North Dakota Supreme Court. Court records show Brewer claimed the district court abused its discretion in allowing the State to admit evidence surrounding one of the victim’s forensic interviews by not renewing his objection to the admission of the evidence at trial. Justices affirmed the judgement, meaning they stand by the district court’s decision because Brewer’s attorney failed to object and said there was no objection to the evidence.

Burleigh County State’s Attorney Brian Johnson handled the case during trial. Johnson says he’s filed a motion to reconsider in light of Judge Sonna Anderson’s motion on Monday.

“Depending on how that goes and what the judge decides, then [that will] dictate what our next step will be,” said Johnson Tuesday when we called for a comment.

We called Judge Anderson and her court recorder emailed us Tuesday saying Anderson had no comment.