May resident Don Yoes went to the Brown County Commissioners Court meeting Monday morning intending to talk to commissioners about what Yoes called “the elephant in the room” — the controversy surrounding the pretrial diversion donation program operated by Brown County Attorney Shane Britton.
    Yoes filled out a form for the commissioners court indicating he wanted to be heard, but Brown County Judge Ray West said Yoes could only talk about matters on the agenda.
    “I shall return,” Yoes told West and commissioners, saying he was being denied his First Amendment right of free speech.
    West invited Yoes, a retired Brownwood police lieutenant, to return when the topic is an agenda item. Yoes said he will ask to be put on an agenda for an upcoming commissioners court meeting.
    “Everybody in the world’s investigated it,” Yoes said, referring to Britton and the donation program. “When is all this going to come to a head?”
    In December, the Texas Rangers issued a press release stating the Rangers “investigated allegations of misconduct in Brown County” at the request of the FBI. The investigation has been completed and over to the U.S. Attorney's Office, the press release said.
    The controversy is “a huge cloud hanging over Brown County,” Yoes said. “Everybody in the world’s investigated it.”
    In other business Monday, commissioners took no action on a request b y Rusty Waddell to bring in banned exotic animals to the W&W Zoon in Brown County.” Waddell said he’s been licensed by the state to own exotic animals, but West said there was more work to be done before commissioners could consider approving the request.