Prosecutor: Man who threatened congressman poses 'grave danger,' should remain jailed
BY DAVID HARPER World Staff Writer
Friday, January 18, 2013
A man who is accused of threatening to kill former U.S. Rep. John Sullivan poses a “grave danger” to the community and should not be released from custody, a federal prosecutor argued Friday.
The safety of the public should outweigh the need of Wayne Franklin Miles to receive further drug treatment, especially when a similar recent rehabilitation effort resulted in failure, Assistant U.S. Attorney Dennis Fries said during a court hearing.
Miles, 53, of Skiatook, is accused of threatening Sullivan, who was then a Republican congressman from Oklahoma’s 1st District. Prosecutors charged Miles in a complaint July 27, alleging that he went to the Skiatook Police Department on July 22 and threatened to shoot Sullivan.
A defense motion was granted Aug. 6 committing Miles for a mental examination, and the prosecution and the defense agreed on Oct. 29 that he was mentally competent.
A document filed Jan. 11 says Miles was “administratively discharged” from 12&12, a substance-abuse rehabilitation facility, for rule violations on Dec. 18 and that he tested positive for methamphetamine on Dec. 26.
The same document says Miles’ friends and family expressed concern to the U.S. Probation Office about Miles’ deteriorating mental condition, including paranoia. On Jan. 7, Miles told a probation officer that “he was going to a friend’s residence and that he might get a gun,” according to the pleading.
Miles was arrested and booked into Tulsa Jail on Jan. 11, according to the jail’s website.
Assistant Federal Public Defender Stephen Greubel told the court on Friday that methamphetamine use triggers Miles’ mental problems. He suggested that Miles be allowed to take part in a 90-day drug-abuse prevention program at the Oaks Rehabilitation Health Center in McAlester. He said that under the defense’s plan, Miles would be brought back to court and not released directly to the community after completing drug treatment.
Fries argued that Oaks, like 12&12, is not a lock-down facility and that Miles could leave at any time.
Prosecutors “have a duty to the public to keep them safe from people who have mental problems” and also have a history of using firearms, he said.
An affidavit filed by a special agent with the U.S. Capitol Police Department’s Investigations Division says Miles fired a shot into a kitchen counter on July 6 when he couldn’t get assistance in an unconsummated plot to kill two people.
U.S. Magistrate Lane Wilson indicated that he will likely rule in the middle of next week regarding whether to allow Miles to go to Oaks or to keep him in jail. Miles will remain jailed at least until then.
Miles waived his right to have the case presented to a federal grand jury, which could have issued an indictment against him.
Such a move often precedes a guilty plea, and Greubel said Friday that plea negotiations are ongoing.
Wayne Franklin Miles