DA rejects Bracey's son for diversionary ARD program

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch

The son of York City's former mayor has been denied access to a diversionary program that could have allowed him to avoid a possible conviction for allegedly attacking his mother.

Also, as of this week, Brandon Anderson Sr. is no longer a York City employee.

He resigned from his position as a shift supervisor at the city's wastewater-treatment plant at the end of December, Michael Doweary, York City's business administrator, said Tuesday, Jan. 2.

Brandon Anderson Sr.

The York County District Attorney's Office on Friday, Dec. 20, denied Anderson entry to the county's Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program.

ARD allows first-time nonviolent offenders to avoid conviction by instead completing a set of court-ordered requirements.

Anderson, 31, of the 900 block of East Market Street, remains free on $7,500 bail, charged with the second-degree misdemeanor of simple assault and summary harassment.

Anderson was denied entrance to ARD for three reasons, according to Kyle King, spokesman for the York County District Attorney's Office.

Anderson's charges are domestic-violence related; he had been on probation supervision within a year of the new charges being filed; and he owed court costs and fees in another case, King said.

"I'm not surprised ARD has been initially rejected," defense attorney Chris Ferro told The York Dispatch on Tuesday.

Ferro said he believes there are a number of other good options to resolve the case and said he will now look at them.

The attorney also called Anderson's resignation from his York City job a good decision.

"It's time for him to move forward, in a different direction," Ferro said.

The allegations: York City Police arrested Anderson about 11:15 a.m. Sept. 30 at then-Mayor Kim Bracey's former South Beaver Street campaign headquarters after he allegedly punched his mother in the face, causing her to fall to the ground.

Anderson kicked Bracey several times in the face, head and back while she was on the ground, court documents state.

York City Mayor C. Kim Bracey addresses several grants, including one for $7 million to York County History Center, during a press conference outside of the center at 147 W. Philadelphia St. in York City, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017. Dawn J. Sagert photo

Those documents also allege Anderson tried to hit Bracey with a wooden flagpole before a bystander stepped in and stopped him.

Bracey has said her son was battling an addiction to opioids. At the time, she asked for privacy for her family.

Anderson went into treatment for his issues after being released on bail, Ferro has said.

Raises at issue: Bracey has acknowledged she approved a promotion and several raises for her son but said she was just following procedure.

Robert Caruso, executive director of the State Ethics Commission, previously told The York Dispatch, "If (a public official) signs off on something that results in one of their immediate family members getting a promotion or pay increase, the commission has consistently ruled" that action is a violation of the Ethics Act's conflict of interest subsection.

Though there is no state law prohibiting an immediate family member of a public official from working in that official’s municipality, the state Ethics Act prohibits officials from making decisions that benefit the private interests of relatives, Caruso has said.

The commission is an independent state agency that enforces the state Ethics Act, which applies to public officials and public employees. Among the commission’s responsibilities is investigating alleged violations of the act, issuing decisions in those cases and providing advice to officials about how to avoid running afoul of the act.

More:Bracey confirms she approved son's promotion, raises; new policy in works

More:York City mayor's son in treatment, now facing trial

City employee: Anderson was hired in March 2007 as a collection operator at York City’s wastewater treatment plant, with a starting wage of $16.89 per hour, according to employment records.

Then-York City Mayor John Brenner signed off on Anderson’s hire in April 2007, while Bracey was serving in his administration as director of community and economic development.

Anderson was promoted to shift supervisor in January 2011, with his wage rising to $20.92 per hour. After working 180 days as a shift supervisor, Anderson’s wage was increased in October 2011 to $21.98 per hour, city records state.

Bracey had repeatedly refused to answer The York Dispatch's questions about whether she played any role in her son's employment with the city before her official Oct. 12 recusal, which came nearly two weeks after Anderson was arrested in the alleged assault at her campaign headquarters.

Brandon Anderson Sr.

Records sought: The York Dispatch filed a Right-to-Know Law request for York City records of Anderson’s initial hire, promotion and raises. The city turned over that paperwork, but the documents after his initial hiring were unsigned, making it unclear who approved the changes.

At the time, Doweary could not explain the missing signatures, although he confirmed signatures are required.

After losing her re-election bid, Bracey confirmed she approved the promotion and raises.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.