Lesson 1 of 7 - free your true Self to guide you

A Media Example of a Typical
Grown Wounded Child (GWC)

How the {Wounds + Unawareness]
Cycle affected one man and his family

The Web address of this article is http://sfhelp.org/gwc/news/gwc3.htm

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         This article vividly illustrates what can happen to an average man and his family from inheriting the toxic [wounds + unawareness] cycle. He, his family, the legal professionals involved, the newspaper author, and the TV station staff were completely unaware of the cycle and it's effects. See my comments after the art5icle. The hilights below are mine. - Peter Gerlach, MSW

+ + +

Former KOIN news director Jeff Alan Brent gets
18-month sentence for using fraudulent identity

by Peter Ames Carlin

The Oregonian 9/20/2010, via OregonLive.com

The case of former TV news director Jeff Alan Brent took another twist at his Monday morning sentencing when U.S. District Judge Garr King rejected the terms of the plea deal his lawyer reached with federal prosecutors. "I'm very bothered by this case," King said after the specifics were disclosed. The deal would have required Brent to serve a 15-month prison term, pay $35,212 in restitution and $10,000 in fines.

Declaring the sentence too lenient, while also acknowledging the limitations imposed by federal sentencing guidelines, King committed Brent to the longest possible jail term: 18 months. The judge let the restitution and fine agreements stand, though he added a stipulation that Brent must surrender all money he might earn from any writings or publications he based on his decades of criminal activity.

Brent's crimes, first detailed in The Oregonian in April 2009, began in 1986 when he abandoned his family to start a new life under the name of Jeff Alan in Arizona. He kept his whereabouts, along with court-required child support payments, away from his young children, and in 1993 his ex-wife petitioned success-fully to have Brent declared dead.

Working with a false Social Security number, Brent spent 23 years building a career in TV news, including a two-year stint at Portland's KOIN (Channel 6). Along the way, Brent also collected cars, homes, credit cards, loans and at least one bankruptcy, all of it founded on his false identity.

The Oregonian series touched off a federal investigation that climaxed in April of this year with Brent's arrest on a nine-count indictment. The government was preparing to reveal more indictments in mid-June when Brent's attorney, Patrick Ehlers, reached a deal with U.S. attorney Helen Cooper, exchanging a guilty plea for the 15-month sentence.

But as the hearing began Monday morning, King made it apparent he had no intention of accepting the lawyers' deal. "I believe (Brent's) criminal history is grossly underrepresented," he said, going on to recount the number of years Brent committed his frauds. The judge said he was particularly incensed by the nearly 80 weeks Brent collected unemployment insurance even as he earned $5,000 a month as a consultant. "You were stealing every week," he said. "There's no easy way to explain that, is there?"

Ehlers acknowledged his client's wrongdoing but argued that Brent had already paid a steep price in the form of a destroyed reputation and career prospects. "He won't be able to get a job pushing carts at Safeway," Ehlers said.

Cooper, on the other hand, cited Brent's years of success, including the books he wrote (one of which was a tutorial on media ethics) and his work as a commentator on national news shows. Brent's ambition seemed particularly clear when he implored his arresting officers to let him comb his hair before taking his booking mug shot, she said.

Later that morning Brent told his girlfriend, Patrice Bailey, to make sure prospective attorneys knew his case would attract national attention. "He's proud of the media attention," Cooper said. Brent declared himself "very remorseful" for his actions. "I'm truly sorry how all this played out," he said.

Still, King opted to impose the maximum sentence allowed by federal guidelines. And though he allowed Brent to delay starting his sentence, and also agreed to let him serve his time in the minimum-security facility in Sheridan, the judge noted the "tremendous disparity" between Brent's sentence and the five-year term he had to give a young, non-English-speaking first offender that morning in a drug-related case.

"I guess it makes a difference if you wear a suit and tie when you commit your crimes," he said.

The hearing recessed as Brent and his lawyer, Ehlers, decided whether to accept the new sentence or withdraw his guilty plea. Ultimately they chose to accept the additional three months behind bars. Brent is to surrender to authorities Jan. 3, 2011.


        This Web and print news article sketches part of the impact of the inherited [wounds + unawareness] cycle on an average man, his family, and our society. It raises the question why did Jeff Brent desert his wife and kids and choose a life of public deception and fraud? The article doesn't describe the traumatic impact of his abandoning his wife and children or anything about his early childhood.  

        In my clinical experience, this kind of behavior is a sure sign of childhood abandonment, neglect, and abuse (trauma), and resulting psychological wounds. National media headlines provide hundreds of daily examples of similar tragic cases in all venues and walks of life. Millions of examples never merit media headlines.

        For poignant Web questions from typical young people who are inheriting the cycle from their unaware parents, see this. These examples document the urgent need for public education on the cycle that is inexorably crippling many (most?) societies. That's why this nonprofit Web site exists. - PKG

      Pause, breathe, and reflect - why did you read this article? Did you get what you needed? If not, what do you need? Who's answering these questions - your true Self, or ''someone else''?

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Updated  April 11, 2015