Dallas Brass drummer arrested, accused of trying to have sex with teen
Published: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 9:57 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 9:57 a.m.
Correction: Kevin Christian is the spokesman for Marion County Public Schools. An earlier version of this article misstated his job.
A South Carolina drummer with the touring ensemble Dallas Brass was arrested Wednesday morning in Alachua County after authorities say he twice drove to meet with a 14-year-old High Springs girl for sex.
Ryan Burd, 28, of Hilton Head Island, S.C., was arrested on three felony charges of traveling to lure a child, use of a two-way communication device to commit a felony and use of a computer to seduce a child, according to an Alachua County Sheriff's Office report.
Burd is a drummer and percussionist in the Dallas Brass, which performs across the nation and internationally and frequently goes to public schools to present clinics and workshops for students of all ages, according to the band's website. Burd has been with the band since 2012.
Though all mention of Burd was removed Wednesday from the ensemble's website, along with most photographs of him, his status with the band was not clear. A spokeswoman for the band said a statement would be posted on its website, but no statement had been posted by Wednesday afternoon.
Dallas Brass performed a fundraising concert Saturday at a Gainesville church to benefit the Buchholz High School band. The ensemble later played music with Forest and Lake Weir high school bands in Ocala on Tuesday and was scheduled to play Wednesday in Clearwater.
The victim said she met Burd at the concert in Gainesville, where Burd performed and led a music clinic for students. The victim later "liked" the Dallas Brass Facebook page and from that page found Burd's personal page, the report said.
After the two began messaging on Facebook, Burd asked the victim her age, and she told him she was 14, the Sheriff's Office said. During the conversation, Burd implied he wanted to have sex with the teenager, the report said.
The victim said Burd traveled to her home late at night between 11 p.m. on Sunday and 5:15 a.m. on Monday without her parent's knowledge to have sex with her. The victim said Burd parked down the street from her home and that she allowed him to come inside, the report said.
The victim said she refused to have any sexual contact with Burd, but that he had brought a towel for having sex. After she refused to have sex, Burd kissed the victim, the report said.
Detectives said the victim told Burd she thought it was time for him to leave because her mom could wake up. Burd then left the victim's home but got the victim's cellphone number, the report stated.
The victim reported the incident on Monday to the Alachua County Sheriff's Office. After the initial report had been made, Burd sent the victim a Facebook message apologizing for the incident, the report said.
ASO detectives then used the girl's Facebook account to message Burd. Burd responded to the messages and offered to drive to the victim's home again on Tuesday night from Ocala, where he was participating in another music event, the report said.
On Wednesday at around 2:30 a.m., Burd arrived at the victim's home believing he was meeting the victim and was arrested by ASO deputies without incident. At the time of his arrest, Burd had a towel and his cellphone, the report said.
After he was arrested, Burd told officials he had traveled to the victim's home with the intention of having sex and knew she was 14. He said no sexual contact had occurred, but that he had kissed the victim, according to the report.
According to the online biography still visible Wednesday morning at the Dallas Brass website, Burd has been an active teacher and arranger with high school percussion programs in the Southeast for more than 10 years. Currently, he also works as a percussion instructor and arranger for two high schools in Georgia.
Lorraine Levine, office manager for Dallas Brass, expressed shock when she heard about Burd's arrest Wednesday morning.
"We've been in business 30 years, and we've never had a problem like this," she said. "We hope that no one was injured or hurt in the incident."
Jackie Johnson, spokeswoman for Alachua County Public Schools, said Dallas Brass also worked with Gainesville High School students and several middle-school students in April 2013.
Kevin Christian, spokesman for Marion County Public Schools, said Forest High School in Ocala had hosted Dallas Brass in previous years, but that administrators were confident nothing like the incident with Burd had happened with Marion County students.
"We hope that a bad decision by one member doesn't erase the value of experiences other students have gotten with professional groups like Dallas Brass," he said. "We don't want this person's actions to erase all the good the band has done."
So far, no parents have contacted the Marion County School Board about other incidents involving Burd.
Burd was being held Wednesday at the Alachua County jail.
Anyone with more information about Burd may call the Alachua County Sheriff's Office at 955-1818.
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