Investigation continues into threats against congressman
BY JERRY WOFFORD World Staff Writer
Thursday, August 02, 2012
Officials continue to investigate the man who is accused of making threats against U.S. Rep. John Sullivan, R-Okla., but authorities said Thursday that they don’t think anyone else was involved.
Wayne Franklin Miles, 52, of Skiatook, faces a federal complaint of “influencing, impeding or retaliating against a federal official by threatening or injuring a family member,” court records show.
He is scheduled to appear in federal court Monday morning for a detention hearing before U.S. Magistrate T. Lane Wilson. He is being held in the Tulsa Jail.
According to a federal affidavit filed July 27 by U.S. Capitol Police Special Agent Jeffry Hardy, Miles went to the Skiatook Police Department on July 22 and repeatedly said he would shoot Sullivan, who Miles said he believed was “sleeping with my wife.”
Miles said he also believed that “Sullivan is using his government power and position to procure a hit man to take his (Miles’) life,” according to the initial complaint.
He was arrested at that time.
Sullivan said in a statement that he is not familiar with Miles.
“I don’t know this individual, his wife or anyone associated with them. Court documents show he is mentally unstable ,” he said in the statement. “I want to thank the law enforcement officials for their quick response to ensure the safety of myself and my family.”
On July 24, investigators with the Skiatook Police Department and U.S. Capital Police served a search warrant on Miles’ property in Skiatook and found several guns, ammunition and a Kevlar bullet-proof vest with “Miles” on the front, the complaint states.
Officials stated in court documents that Miles came to believe that his wife’s boyfriend was Sullivan this spring after he conducted Internet searches of his wife’s name.
At the time, the Sullivan campaign was running online advertisements that were “triggered by online searches by a computer user on topics such as guns and shooting ranges,” according to the affidavit. The campaign was also running several ads on television, mail and radio.
Sullivan was defeated in the June Republican primary after serving five terms in Congress.
FBI Special Agent Clay Simmonds said the bureau and other authorities responded as they would to any threat with some credibility.
“We treat it like it’s a valid, credible threat until we can prove otherwise,” Simmonds said. “This guy seemed to make it a fairly credible threat, so that’s why we responded the way we did.”
The federal complaint states that Miles has a history of violent actions, including threats made against his former wife.
In his affidavit for a search warrant, Skiatook Police Detective Jerry Bullard characterized Miles as “mentally unstable.”
Sullivan said his office took the threat seriously and has been cooperating with authorities in their investigation. Although he and his family were concerned, he said they now feel more at ease. Simmonds said he was not aware of any other people being investigated in connection with the threats.
U.S. Capitol Police spokeswoman Lt. Kimberly Schneider said she could not comment on the ongoing investigation.
Sullivan spokesman John Tidwell said authorities have kept the congressman’s office abreast of developments to determine what security response is required.
“We look at everything very closely,” he said.
Stephen Greubel, the federal public defender listed in court records as Miles’ attorney, was unavailable for comment Thursday.
Records show that Miles posted a $26,000 bond shortly after his July 22 arrest. Records also show that he appeared July 26 in Tulsa County District Court on charges of possession of methamphetamine, larceny from a retailer and violation of a protective order. Those charges were filed in July.
He was arrested again July 27 on the federal complaint, jail records show. Monday’s hearing is to determine a bail amount.
Wayne Franklin Miles
Rep. John Sullivan