Why Bam Bam Brown From Alaskan Bush People Spent Time In Jail

Discovery Channel's "Alaskan Bush People" follows the Brown family — Billy, Ami, and their seven children — and their commitment to living life off the grid. The show is currently in its 13th season, and since its inception in 2014, fans have watched the trials and triumphs of the Brown family

One such trial took place when the family patriarch and the couple's second-oldest son, Joshua "Bam Bam" Brown, were sent to jail. According to Distractify, the drama went down in October 2014, when Billy and Ami were "charged with a total of 60 counts of first-degree unsworn falsification and first-and-second-degree theft." The outlet reported that, from 2011 to 2013, the Brown family allegedly lied in order to get the annual oil revenue checks that are granted to residents of Alaska.

At the time, the Brown family did not actually live in Alaska, meaning that they never qualified for the oil revenue checks they received. How was Bam Bam involved and how long did he spend in prison? Read on to find out. 

Bam Bam Brown spent 30 days in jail

According to Distractify, both Billy and Bam Bam Brown spent 30 days in jail in 2016. In addition, the pair had to dedicate 40 hours to community service. Since the two pled guilty, the outlet notes that the other family members' charges ultimately got dropped.

When Billy spoke to People in July 2017, he claimed that he and his family were unaware they had committed fraud at the time. "Because of the way we live our lives and the way we often unconventionally travel, I didn't keep good track of our movements," he shared in a statement. "I accept full responsibility for filing for benefits without confirming that we met the requirements. We are committed to living in Alaska for the long term and we respect the state's rules. I thought it best to settle to put this behind us." At the time of the incident, the Brown family was living in Seattle, Washington.

The judge thought the sentences should include jail time

According to the Anchorage Daily News, Juneau Superior Court Judge Philip Pallenberg believed that 30 days in jail would be "appropriate for the crime." He added that the Brown family shouldn't be treated "more harshly" because they appear on television.The outlet quoted Pallenberg as saying, "If somebody who's living in a trailer stole $2,000 in merchandise from Walmart, that person would get jail time. If somebody's who's struggling to get by stole someone's purse and used their debit card to run up $1,000 (or) $2,000 worth of bills that came out of somebody's checking account — they would get jail time."

In the end, according to the Juneau Empire, Billy Brown was ordered to not only spend 30 days in jail, but he was forced to pay a $10,000 fine within 90 days of being released and pay back $7,956 in PFD money. Bam Bam Brown was asked to pay a $5,000 fine with $3,000 suspended. In a statement to the judge, Bam Bam shared, "I regret the circumstances ... and I have learned a lot from the experience, and thank you for all the trouble, and that's it."