Belligerent bungling beer burglar ordered to bunk back at bastille near brewery

An eight-year and three-month prison sentence was handed down for Juneau man convicted of stealing a convenience store truck and crashing it into a local brewery to grab some beer.

Michael Rae, 55, was sentenced in Juneau Superior Court on Wednesday on charges on first degree vehicle theft (four years consecutively served), second degree burglary (four years consecutively served), third degree theft (four years concurrently served), and third degree criminal mischief (ninety days consecutively served) in connection with the incident in April of last year at the Alaskan Brewing Company in Lemon Creek.

The composite sentence includes terms for each charge to be served either consecutively or concurrently. A period of probation was not specified as part of the sentence.

The vehicle was a box van truck taken from the Lemon Creek Breeze-In and run into the front door of the brewery’s tasting room and gift shop. A bumper was left behind. Several six-packs, a case, and two five-gallon kegs were taken from the shop.

Repairs to the truck and brewery cost over $13,000. Value of the stolen beer was no more than $500.

Jurors convicted Rae during a January trial on the charges.

District Attorney Dave Brower called Rae a “worst offender” and asked that he be sentenced to twelve years in prison, four years below the maximum for all the charges. Defense attorney Kevin Higgins argued on Rae’s behalf for no more than six to ten years, despite another attempt by Rae to fire him. Rae himself recently tried to file a motion for a mistrial. He also tried to submit an incomprehensible and likely frivolous counterclaim against Higgins, Superior Court Judge Louis Mendendez, and Attorney General Michael Geraghty. Rae told Judge Menendez that he was not a qualified judge, a fake, a fraud with no jurisdiction in the case.

Wednesday’s sentencing hearing featured a belligerent, antagonistic, and disrespectful Rae calling the judge by his first name, telling him at the end to “shut the f*** up, you already said enough,” arguing with a Judicial Services escort, and resisting efforts to be fingerprinted as part of the normal sentencing routine.

Despite Rae’s constant outbursts and interruptions, Judge Menendez largely remained measured in dealing with Rae and explaining the sentence. He recognized that Rae seemed to be intelligent, with no diagnosed psychological issues, and with a strong family as potential support.

But Menendez said that Rae seemed to have a wanton disregard for property and for others, noting Rae’s previous prison sentences for assault, burglary, theft, and perjury.

Menendez figured isolation was the best course while probation would be “a lost cause.” At one point Menendez said “You are a dangerous man, you are criminally selfish.”

Prosecutors want 60 days to file a restitution order.

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