Crime

Judge revokes probation for gang member accused in severe beating of ex-girlfriend

A documented member of the Simon City Royals street gang accused of nearly beating an ex-girlfriend to death is headed back to prison for now.

A judge ruled Thursday he violated his probation.

A muscular but short man at 5 feet tall, Brandon Chase Tanner stood behind the podium with his attorney, Calvin Taylor.

Tanner admitted to Judge Robert Krebs that he had violated his probation.

Tanner’s violations included his arrest on a charge of felony domestic violence by aggravated assault for the alleged Aug. 25 beating of his ex, Courtney Lynn Schouest.

He had also been arrested on two additional burglary charges.

The judge revoked Tanner’s probation after a review of the infractions.

Tanner’s other violations included failure to meet with probation officers or keep up with payments for court costs, fines and fees.

Though Tanner admitted violating his probation, his attorney said he denied any criminal wrongdoing in the domestic assault and burglaries.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections will determine how much time Tanner will spend in prison to serve out the remainder of his prison sentence for grand larceny.

Tanner was sentenced to five years in prison, with two years suspended and three to serve for grand larceny in 2016.

He was released on probation in 2018, records show.

Tanner has a history of other felony convictions, mostly for felony drug offenses, and a misdemeanor conviction for misdemeanor domestic violence related to another assault on Schouest years earlier.

Tanner is expected to remain behind bars pending any indictments in the felony domestic violence and burglary cases.

After court, Taylor said his client has a history of psychological problems. Tanner’s family was there as show of support, but declined to comment.

As for the alleged felony assault on Schouest, Taylor said “there is more to the story,” but did not elaborate.

Schouest sat down with Sun Herald to talk about the Aug. 25 attack to encourage others to get out of abusive relationships before it’s too late.

Schouest said the attack lasted nearly five hours and she was repeatedly punched, kicked, choked to the point of nearly passing out and dragged around by her hair.

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Margaret Baker is an investigative reporter whose search for truth exposed corrupt sheriffs, a police chief and various jailers and led to the first prosecution of a federal hate crime for the murder of a transgendered person. She worked on the Sun Herald’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Hurricane Katrina team. When she pursues a big story, she is relentless.
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