Dallas man accused of assaulting officers during Capitol riot to remain in custody

A Dallas man charged in the January attack on the U.S. Capitol will remain in custody for now, even though a federal judge granted his release on Monday.

The FBI says body camera video captured Luke Coffee assaulting police officers with a crutch. There was four hours of testimony Monday at the federal courthouse in downtown Dallas.

The government says that Coffee chose on January 6 to stand with rioters rather than U.S. Capitol police and should not be free. But his attorney, Jim Burnham, argued he was really there for an event that did not take place and he was trying to be a peacemaker.

Some the items shown in court included surveillance video and body camera footage from officers at the Capitol that day. Officials also described words he spoke to his mom and dad that it said were incriminating.

FBI officials said Coffee used a crutch to push and charge against Capitol police at the tunnel entrance to the Capitol, though he was never actually inside

Coffee’s attorney argued that he only picked up that crutch for a minute or less and that actually if he hit any officers with it, it was 10 seconds or less that he pushed against officers. The attorney, Jim Burnham, claimed Coffee was actually there shouting "stop and pray," and trying to keep the peace.

Coffee is a Baylor graduate who grew up in Dallas. According to his IMBD page, he has appeared in more than a dozen movies or shows, like Friday Night Lights. Most of them have been small roles.

Someone recognized him in videos they saw about the Capitol riot and contacted the FBI. A college classmate who is now an FBI agent identified him, his arrest warrant affidavit states.

The judge ordered Coffee’s pre-trial release with specific conditions, but prosecutors immediately requested a stay for Washington D.C. district court to reconsider.

Coffee will not be released until that court reviews his status, and there is no timeline on when that would occur.

Coffee faces charges of assault of federal law enforcement officer with a dangerous weapon, interference with law enforcement officer during civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding, unlawful entry on restricted grounds, and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.

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