Renowned bowler and former PBA Central Region Rookie of the Year, Brandon Novak, faced a significant setback on Feb. 1, 2024, when he was arrested during the US Open qualifiers.
The US Marshals detained him on charges of pandering and possessing obscene materials involving a juvenile, sparking various reactions to his arrest.
Scioto Post reported Novak’s arrest during the fourth round of qualifying rounds for the 2024 PBA U.S. Open at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis, IN³. US Marshals, investigating him since February 2023, arrested him for allegedly buying, procuring, and possessing obscene materials involving a juvenile.
The Hollywood Reporter captured the arrest on video, depicting Novak in handcuffs being escorted out of the arena. The footage also captured the shock and disbelief of some supporters and fans.
A police spokesperson confirmed a male’s detention for pandering but did not disclose a name or additional details. Novak’s attorney refrained from commenting on the arrest or the charges.
A Zane Trace graduate, Novak commenced competitive bowling at 17, securing the high school state team title. In 2012, he earned the PBA Central Region Rookie of the Year title, establishing himself as a formidable talent in the sport.
Novak clinched various regional and national titles, including the 2016 PBA Xtra Frame Reality Check Classic, the 2017 PBA Xtra Frame Gene Carter’s Pro Shop Classic, and the 2018 PBA Xtra Frame Parkside Lanes Open. He participated in major tournaments like the USBC Masters, the PBA World Championship, and the US Open.
Ranked 15th in the PBA Tour points list for the 2023-24 season, Novak qualified for the PBA Playoffs and was a favored contender in the prestigious US Open.
Novak’s recent arrest adds to a history of legal issues, including previous arrests for offenses like violation of a temporary protection order, tele harassment, and menacing stalking. In 2022, he faced an arrest in Franklin County, Ohio, for a TPO violation.
Critics and detractors have labeled him a troublemaker and a negative influence on the bowling community, questioning his integrity and character. Some have even called for his suspension or expulsion from the PBA.
Supporters, however, defend Novak, asserting that he is a victim of false accusations and a witch hunt. They laud his skills and achievements, expressing hope that he can overcome his legal troubles and return to the lanes.
Novak’s future in bowling remains uncertain as he withdrew from the US Open and the PBA Playoffs, and his participation in upcoming tournaments is unknown. Depending on the case’s outcome, he may face severe penalties from the PBA, including fines, suspensions, or bans.
Legal consequences, such as jail time, probation, or registration as a sex offender, may follow if Novak is convicted of the charges. As of now, he has not issued any public statements or apologies.
Brandon Novak, a celebrated bowling star, has faced accolades and fans in his career alongside controversies and legal issues. The charges of pandering and possessing obscene materials involving a juvenile pose a serious threat to his career and reputation.