A Knox County jury convicted a 54-year-old Camden man on March 4 of criminal mischief for destroying a fence belonging to his neighbor.

The jury found Craig A. Brown guilty of criminal mischief. He had been originally charged with aggravated criminal mischief but the jury opted to convict on the lesser offense.

Justice Jeffrey Hjelm fined Brown $500 and ordered him to pay $1,100 in restitution to neighbors Michael and Jackie Ferrara.

Brown had denied wrongdoing and said he removed the fence because it was on his property. The parties live on Stonehurst Drive. The restitution is to be paid pending any appeal Brown files.

Brown filed a lawsuit Feb. 12 in U.S. District Court against the town of Camden, District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau and Assistant District Attorney Lindsay Jones. In his lawsuit, he claimed a conspiracy by various parties to deprive him of part of his land. He listed numerous town officials, attorneys, surveyors and the prosecution in that conspiracy to deprive him of his land and civil rights.

He asked the federal court to block the state from prosecuting him but Magistrate Margaret Kravchuk denied the request on Feb. 25.

“This court rarely, if ever, interferes with an ongoing criminal prosecution in state court,” the magistrate stated in her decision. “There are no facts presented which would warrant an expedited response to the motion for injunctive relief.”