A Miami, Oklahoma, man is out of the Tulsa County jail on bond Friday after being arrested Thursday on a federal complaint alleging that he committed assault during the Jan. 6 breach of the U.S. Capitol.
Tulsa County sheriff’s deputies arrested Benjamen Scott Burlew on two misdemeanor charges: assault within special maritime and territorial jurisdiction and committing an act of physical violence on U.S. Capitol grounds.
Court minutes indicate that U.S. Magistrate Jodi Jayne authorized Burlew’s release on $5,000 bond after a more than hourlong proceeding. She ordered Burlew to return to court Aug. 26.
Details of the federal complaint weren’t made available by Friday evening, but the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Tulsa asked in a filing for Burlew, 41, to remain jailed pending the resolution of the matter. The filing cites the government’s view that Burlew could be a serious flight risk — prompting Friday’s court appearance.
Court minutes show that Burlew’s attorney, Ryan Ray, had a woman testify on Burlew’s behalf during the hearing on the motion for detention, during which Burlew appeared by video.
In deciding to grant Burlew the right to post bond and be released, Jayne noted that the allegations were misdemeanors and cited Burlew’s close geographic ties to the federal Northern District of Oklahoma and his previous lack of criminal history.
The remainder of the case will be heard in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, according to a transfer order filed Friday afternoon. The complaint as filed in federal court there remained sealed as of Friday evening.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Tulsa said the agency would not make a jail booking photo of Burlew available.
If found guilty, he faces a maximum penalty of one year in federal custody on the first count and six months on the second.
The terms of Burlew’s release stipulate that he can travel only within the boundaries of the Northern District of Oklahoma or to court in Washington, D.C., unless he obtains permission from the U.S. Probation Office.
Jayne also ordered that any firearms in Burlew’s residence be removed and that the Probation Office verify that the removal takes place.
She additionally ordered Burlew to “successfully participate” in mental health treatment under the direction of the Probation Office and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. A shared Facebook profile matching the name of Burlew and the woman who testified alludes to Burlew’s being a veteran, as the account discusses how veterans can access stimulus benefits.
The last public Facebook post on the account, made in August 2020, promoted support for former President Donald Trump “because I kinda like freedom and stuff.”
Featured video: Graphic video shows mob attacking Capitol on Jan. 6