Bryce Marlatt, a Republican state senator from Oklahoma, is being accused of forcefully grabbing and kissing a female Uber driver while she was dropping him off at a hotel.
The driver picked up a male rider around 10 p.m. on June 26 to take him to a hotel in Oklahoma City, according to a police report filed two days later. During the ride, the driver said the rider forcefully grabbed her and started kissing her on the neck.
Gary White, a spokesperson for the Oklahoma City Police Department, told BuzzFeed News that he could not verify the identity of anyone involved in the incident, and provided a copy of the police report in which the names of those involved had been redacted.
Oklahoma's KFOR News confirmed that the unredacted report identified Marlatt as the rider.
The woman approached a police officer on June 28, saying she had been assaulted on Monday night and was "unsure what she needed to do," the report states.
She told police that she picked up Marlatt about 10 p.m. and was on the Lake Hefner Parkway in Oklahoma City when he assaulted her. She said she dropped Marlatt off at 10:36 p.m. at a hotel off the expressway, and then went to a nearby bar, where she was able to use the basic information she had about the rider to find him online. She reported the incident two days later, and showed a photo of Marlatt to the police officer.
"She was giving this person a ride," said Knight. "He was in the back seat. And, he kept reaching around, grabbing her, kissing on her, things along those lines."
The Uber driver told police that she wants to press charges, according to the report provided to BuzzFeed News. She said that Uber had refused to release information about the customer to her, but would provide it to law enforcement.
"What's been reported is not tolerated and has no place on the Uber app," the company said in a statement to BuzzFeed News. "We are working with the Oklahoma City Police Department and will provide any information to them that would be helpful for their ongoing investigation."
Marlatt did not immediately respond to BuzzFeed News' questions about the allegations. But his attorney, Robert Don Gifford, told BuzzFeed News the senator was "shocked" when Uber informed him of the allegations.
"We are in contact with Uber to get to the bottom of this," Gifford said. "While no one from law enforcement has contacted him, he is willing cooperate and wants to find out more about these allegations."
Marlatt, 37, has served in the Oklahoma State Senate since 2008, representing District 27 in the western part of the state. In 2015, he pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor after a sheriff's deputy found him drunk and asleep in his running pickup truck on a country road in Oklahoma's Woodward County.
Local station Fox 25 reported that after waking Marlatt up by rapping on his truck window several times, officers told the lawmaker that he smelled like alcohol. When asked if he'd been drinking, police said Marlatt replied: "No more than anyone else."
Read the report here:
Brianna Sacks is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.
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