Some Harsh Comments!
By Jan Bergemann

This latest ruling by Circuit Court Judge Catherine Brunson (Please mark this name in big letters for the next time she is on the ballot!) is a slap in the face not only of the wide majority of the public, but as well in the face of the Governor and all our State legislators who passed Senate Bill SB 148 in the last session. Despite warnings of many citizens the legislature didn't add the words flag pole and/or bracket, which comes now back to haunt the involved parties.

But nevertheless, this ruling is a clear sign that some of our judges are obviously not interested in legislative opinions or much less public opinions. 

The good thing is the fact that even judges are elected officials and she will be up for election again one day. She is not listed on the November ballot, in that case the ruling would have possibly been different. These kind of elected officials seem to count on the short memory of the voters in this country. And yes, they are often correct! But in this case we all should definitely make a big note and remember the name Catherine Brunson. I already pledge a campaign donation to the person opposing her in the next campaign. I can be sure that she will not rule that her opponents bank account can be seized, like she did with the account of the donations for George Andres defense. 

Let's see if the Governor will do something about the fact that this judge clearly undermined his authority. Or if the office of the General Attorney will do something to enforce the will of the legislature and the people.

This abuse of our freedom has to stop, right now! We can't be bullied by self-righteous judges or boards of homeowners' associations!

This is just my opinion assumingly protected by our Constitution. How much is our Constitution still worth in the eyes of some of our judges?

Good luck in the Appeals Court! Hopefully there Common Sense will prevail!

Jupiter Flag man' sees another legal setback

Article Courtesy of

By Randall Murray 
October 19, 2002

JUPITER, Fla. -- Jupiter "flag man" George Andres and his wife encountered another legal setback in their two-year fight over a flagpole the ex-Marine erected in the front yard of his Indian Creek home. 

Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge Catherine Brunson dismissed motions by Andres' Boca Raton attorney Barry Silver to dissolve her previous rulings against the Andres and to disallow a motion from West Palm Beach attorney Steven Selz to seize one of Andres' bank accounts. 

The account in question is one set up by Andres for funds sent to him by supporters around the world who have been following his battles with the Indian Creek Phase III-B Homeowners Association. The association board sued Andres after he refused to dismantle a 12-foot PVC flagpole from which he flies the American flag in his yard. 

And in a surprising development Thursday, Selz stated that had Andres voluntarily surrendered that account when it held some $16,000 earlier this year, "my client likely would have accepted that, and this would have all gone away." 

Brunson's original ruling in favor of the association, and subsequent upholding of that ruling by the Fourth District Court of Appeals in West Palm Beach, levied daily fines and penalties on Andres that now total more than $25,000. 

Selz's comments Thursday were the first public indication the board would have settled for less than the total amount due them. 

Following Brunson's Thursday ruling, Silver announced he would appeal it immediately to the Fourth DCA, which he did Friday. 

"I'm asking for expedited action on this," Silver told The Jupiter Courier. "I'm also asking the state attorney general's office and the governor to get involved." 

Earlier this month, Andres had stated that a representative of the attorney general's office in Tallahassee had expressed an interest in becoming involved in the case, given a state law passed last fall.

      'Flag Man' Ordered To Hand Over Donations

Posted Friday, 10-18-2002

Monetary donations made to a Jupiter man to aid his legal battle to keep his flag pole have been awarded to the man's opponent, a judge announced Thursday. 

George Andres, who earned the nickname "Flag Man" in his neighborhood, amassed $28,000 in fines from the Indian Creek Homeowners Association for flying an American flag on a 12-foot pole in his yard. 

Instead of having a lawsuit against him dismissed Thursday as he expected, Circuit Judge Catherine Brunson ruled that the $5,000 Andres collected would go toward paying the fines. 

The $5,000 was collected by veterans, a local radio station and people throughout the country. Even Gov. Jeb Bush contributed from his own pocket. 

"I really didn't expect a judge to turn around and do that," Andres said. "I really feel bad about it. I think this judge didn't really care about the people and I don't think the judge cares about the law. I think the judge thinks she can do what she wants to do." 

The ruling means that Andres will be required to pay the difference on the fines, even though Florida's retroactive flag-flying law says he does not have to. 

"All the money they sent to help him fly the flag is going to be used to finance the people who are trying to stop him from flying the flag," Andres' attorney, Barry Silver, said. "Sometimes it's almost embarrassing to be a part of a system that could allow that to happen." 

Andres' hopes of suing the homeowners association to recover his legal costs have been halted by the ruling as well. He is appealing the judge's ruling and expects his case to eventually reach the Florida Supreme Court. 

"We're going to keep fighting, and I'm sure there are going to be a lot of people who will back me up 100 percent," Andres said. "We're going to keep this fight up and win this case." 

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