WASHINGTON — A suspected domestic terrorist from Oklahoma was arrested on Aug. 19 for crimes related to the Jan. 6 breach of the U.S. Capitol.
The Jan. 6 insurrection disrupted a joint session of Congress in the process of counting the Electoral College votes, which certified the election of Joseph R. Biden Jr.
Benjamen Scott Burlew, 41, of Miami, Okla., is charged with federal offenses that include assault in special territorial jurisdiction and acts of physical violence on restricted grounds, according to a Department of Justice news release.
Mr. Burlew made his initial court appearance on Aug. 20 in a federal court.
According to court documents, Mr. Burlew was captured in two videos engaging in a physical assault against a credentialed media member, an Associated Press photographer.
As depicted in the video, the photographer was pulled down a set of stairs near the lower west terrace of the U.S. Capitol Building by two unknown assailants.
While attempting to avoid confrontation with the unknown assailants, the photographer relocated his position elsewhere on the stairs, at which point the photographer was aggressively confronted by Mr. Burlew, the video shows.
After that confrontation, it was alleged, Mr. Burlew—along with other assailants, including Alan William Byerly–grabbed the photographer and pushed him, then shoved and dragged him parallel to the stairs.
Mr. Byerly was indicted on Aug. 20 on charges related to the insurrection over his alleged assaulting a D.C. Metropolitan Police Officer during another incident.
After shoving the photographer, Mr. Burlew disengaged and walked in the other direction while the other assailants continued to push and drag the photographer, court documents said.
Later, the photographer can be observed on the video having been backed up against a low stone wall separating the U.S. Capitol structure from the west lawn of the building.
Allegedly, Mr. Burlew lunged toward the photographer, and grabbed his upper chest and leg to forcefully throw and push the photographer over the wall to the west lawn several feet below.
Allegedly, Mr. Burlew continued to shove and push the photographer until he was thrown backward over the wall, andhe landed on his back on the grounds of the west lawn.
Mr. Burlew can be seen in the video leaning over the wall to observe the photographer’s fall.
Mr. Burlew is one of eight individuals, who have been arrested for allegedly destroying media equipment, assaulting journalists or inciting violence against members of news media.
Other defendants facing similar charges include: Chase Kevin Allen, 25, of, Reno, Nev.; Joshua Dillon Haynes, 39, of Covington, Va.; Sandra Weyer, 57, of Mechanicsburg, Pa.; Shane Jason Woods, 43, of Auburn, Ill.; Gabriel Morgan Brown, 38, of Bayville, New York; Zvonimir Joseph Jurlina, 31, of Bethpage, N.Y.; and Alan William Byerly, 54, of Fleetwood, Pa.
In the eight months since Jan. 6, more than 570 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the insurrection.