Tag Archives: Ammon Bundy

Oregon Standoff: Cliven Bundy Arrested, Occupiers Say They Will Leave Refuge

After the four remaining protesters at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Burns, Oregon, spent Wednesday evening on live stream while the FBI surrounded the compound, they have reportedly agreed to leave peacefully Thursday morning.

The father of two of the group’s leaders, who were taken into FBI custody on Jan. 26, was also arrested by the FBI after he flew into the Portland International Airport Wednesday night.

The Oregonian reported that Cliven Bundy, 74, was booked into the downtown Multnomah County jail at 10:54 p.m.” on the charge of conspiring to interfere with a federal officer, which is the same charge his sons Ammon and Ryan are facing.

Cliven Bundy’s charges, which also include weapons charges, stem from a 2014 standoff with the Bureau of Land Management on his own ranch in Nevada over grazing rights, which ended after federal agents were countered by about 1,000 armed protesters.

Prior to Bundy’s arrival in Portland, the “Bundy Ranch” Facebook page posted a status Wednesday announcing that he was on his way to the Harney County Resource Center in Burns, and calling for Americans to “wake up.”


Four hours after the first status was posted, that page posted an update claiming that Bundy “just landed in Portland,” and was immediately “surrounded by SWAT and DETAINED.”

The page then noted that its users were “just in contact with the final four on the ground and all is quiet.”

The four remaining occupiers at the refuge, Sean Anderson, 47, and Sandy Anderson, 48, of Riggins, Idaho, David Fry, 27, of Blanchester, Ohio, and Jeff Banta, 46, of Elko, Nevada, all face charges of “conspiracy to impede federal officials.”

The remaining four said they would turn themselves in Thursday morning, after FBI agents surrounded the compound Wednesday night. The tense standoff was broadcast over live stream.

As of 8:40 p.m. PST, the FBI stated that they would not make any moves, and would wait for Rev. Franklin Graham and Nevada State Assemblywoman Michelle Fiore to negotiate the protestors’ surrender at 8 a.m. PST.


Live stream of standoff:


Ammon Bundy Calls for Fellow Protestors to ‘Stand Down, Go Home’

After he was taken into FBI custody Tuesday, Ammon Bundy released a statement Wednesday calling for fellow protestors occupying the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Burns, Oregon, to “stand down” and to “go home.”

Bundy, who has acted as the leader of the group since it began occupying the refuge headquarters, was arrested on charges of “conspiracy to impede federal officials” along with four other protestors when they were stopped by the FBI and Oregon State Police while traveling on the highway.

[One Dead, Five in Custody After Shots Fired During Confrontation Between Oregon Protestors and FBI]

LeVoy Finnicum, a spokesperson for the group, was shot and killed during the stop. Ammon Bundy’s brother Ryan Bundy was also wounded. The FBI has yet to say why shots were fired.

In a statement released by his attorney, Mike Arnold, Bundy began by addressing Finnicum’s death, and saying that “his love for this country ran deep through the blood he gave.”

[pull_quote_center]First I want to address my beloved friend, LeVoy Finnicum. LeVoy is one of the greatest men and greatest patriots I’ve ever seen. His love for this country ran deep through the blood he gave yesterday. And I mourn for him and I mourn for his family. I’m praying fervently for you in every prayer.[/pull_quote_center]

Bundy went on to say that he is asking the federal government to allow the people at the refuge to go home without being prosecuted,” and he urged the protestors to “stand down” and to “go home.”

He claimed the protestors who were taken into FBI custody would use the opportunity of “being in the system” to answer constitutional questions regarding the “rights of statehood and the limits on federal property ownership.”

[pull_quote_center]We’ll have more to say later, but right now I’m asking the federal government to allow the people at the refuge to go home without being prosecuted. To those remaining at the refuge, I love you. Let us take this fight from here. Please stand down. Please stand down. Go home and hug your families. This fight is ours for now in the courts. Please go home. Being in the system we’re going to take this opportunity to answer the questions on article 1 section 8 clause 17 of the United States Constitution regarding the rights of statehood and the limits on federal property ownership. Thank you and God bless America. .[/pull_quote_center]

The group of protestors initially began occupying the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters on Jan. 2, in support of two ranchers who were forced to serve mandatory minimum sentences after they were convicted of arson on federal lands.

During a press conference Wednesday, FBI agent Greg Bretzing said it is “the actions and choices of the armed occupiers that have led us to where we are today.”

“The armed occupiers have been given ample opportunities to leave,” Bretzing said. “Instead these individuals have chosen to threaten and intimidate the America they profess to love, and through their criminal actions to bring these consequences upon themselves.”

[RELATED: Bundy Family Claims Protestor war Unarmed, had Hands Up When Killed by FBI]

Prior to releasing the statement asking protestors to leave the refuge, Ammon Bundy reportedly told his wife Lisa that Finnicum was “cold-blood murdered,” and that he “had his hands in the air and said he was unarmed and they shot him.” 

Bundy Family Claims Protestor was Unarmed, had Hands Up When Killed by FBI

The Bundy family claimed Arizona rancher Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was unarmed and had his hands up when he was shot and killed by FBI agents during a confrontation Tuesday near Burns, Oregon.

Finicum, 55, was part of the group of protestors occupying the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Burns. At least eight others, including protest leaders Ammon and Ryan Bundy, were arrested after the FBI and Oregon State police confronted them while they were traveling along U.S. Highway 395.

Cliven Bundy posted an audio message on the Bundy Ranch Facebook page Tuesday night claiming that his son Ammon told two family members that he was arrested, his brother Ryan was shot in the arm, and Finicum was murdered in “cold-blood.”

“LaVoy has been cold-blood murdered,” Ammon Bundy reportedly told his wife Lisa. “He had his hands in the air and said he was unarmed and they shot him.”

Bundy’s nephew, Steve Bundy, also told the Las Vegas Sun that Finicum was “cold-blood murdered,” and he said there would be “retribution.”

There has to be retribution,” Steve Bundy said. “But we’re not going to ruin the element of surprise.”

Arianna Finicum Brown, 26, one of LaVoy Finicum’s 11 children, told The Oregonian that her father was a “good man, through and through,” and said, “He would never ever want to hurt somebody, but he does believe in defending freedom and he knew the risks involved.”

Finicum was a spokesperson for, and a member of, the the group of protesters that has been occupying the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters for the last month, in support of two ranchers who were forced to serve mandatory minimum sentences after they were convicted of arson on federal lands.

Five of the protesters were arrested on felony charges of “conspiracy to impede federal officers” Tuesday after FBI agents stopped a vehicle traveling on Highway 395 from Burns to John Day. The protestors included Ammon Bundy, 40; Ryan Bundy, 43; Brian Cavalier, 44; Shawna Cox, 59; and Ryan Payne, 32.

Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy, 45, and Peter Santilli, 50 were also reportedly taken into FBI custody separately in Burns, along with Jon Eric Ritzheimer, 32, in Arizona.

Following the confrontation, the FBI has not released details as to why the men were stopped, or why a shooting broke out, but it has set up checkpoints around the wildlife refuge.

One of the remaining protestors at the refuse headquarters, Jason Patrick, told Reuters that protesters would continue to occupy the refuge until there was a “redress of grievances.”

“I’ve heard ‘peaceful resolution’ for weeks now and now there’s a cowboy who is my friend who is dead,” Patrick said, “so prepare for the peaceful resolution.”

Patrick also compared Finicum’s death to the death of Tamir Rice, an unarmed 12-year-old who was shot by Cleveland police in 2014. The officers responsible were not charged.

“The government can kill who they want for whatever reason they want with impunity,” Patrick said.

[UPDATE: Ammon Bundy Calls for Fellow Protestors to ‘Stand Down, Go Home’]

One Dead, Five in Custody After Shots Fired During Confrontation Between Oregon Protestors and FBI

One man is dead and five in police custody after the group occupying the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Burns, Oregon, reportedly exchanged gunfire with the FBI and the Oregon State Police during a highway traffic stop Tuesday.

Oregon Live reported that Ryan Bundy, 43, suffered a gunshot wound, and was taken into custody along with Ammon Bundy, 40, Ryan W. Payne, 32, Brian Cavalier, 44, and Shawna J. Cox, 59 on felony charges of “conspiracy to impede federal officers.”

KATU News reported that “there was some sort of engagement involving shots fired” on Highway 395 around 5 p.m. between Burns and John Day, where the group was traveling for a community meeting.

The group of protesters initially occupied the Malheur Wildlife Refuge headquarters in early January, in support of two ranchers who were forced to serve mandatory minimum sentences after they were convicted of arson on federal lands.

Prior to the occupation, Ammon Bundy, the son of rancher Cliven Bundy of Nevada, asked supporters to come out to the refuge and encouraged “patriots” to “stand up not stand down.”

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown wrote two letters to the federal government Wednesday asking for help removing the group, whom she referred to as “armed criminals.”

[UPDATE: Bundy Family Claims Protestor was Unarmed, had Hands Up When Killed by FBI]

Should We Expand The War on Terror to Oregon?

By Anya Parampil, Anchor/Correspondent at RT America

As the occupation by a group of armed, militia-style far-right activists led by Ammon Bundy dragged on at a federal wildlife refuge in rural Oregon, some began to demand that the mainstream media label the occupiers as “terrorists.” Commenters like Wajahat Ali at the Guardian and Janell Ross at the Washington Post homed in on the blanket descriptions of Muslims as potential violent extremists and black protesters as “thugs,” questioning why it didn’t apply the same sort of politically charged label to the white militia types carrying out a subversive action in Oregon.

Juliette Kayyem, a Department of Homeland Security Advisory Committee member and CNN National Security contributor, went a step further, arguing that the Oregon occupiers were terrorists “by any definition.” Kayyem did not offer any definition of terrorism, however, nor did she put forward a coherent strategy for flushing out those guilty of such a grave federal crime. While warning against a disproportionate Waco-style raid on the wildlife refuge, Kayyem simultaneously argued for a “show of federal force.” Despite having promoted herself as a “Security Mom,” it seemed that Kayyem had not fully thought through the consequences of designating a motley band of armed rightists as terrorists, or how such a label would lead to a favorable outcome.

Someone who knows through first-hand experience the consequences of expanding the definition of terrorism to advance the state’s short-term political imperatives is Will Potter. An experienced environmental activist and acclaimed investigative journalist, Potter testified before Congress in 2006 about the anti-democratic impact of the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, which labeled many animal rights activists who engaged in direct action against factory farms and laboratories that practiced animal testing as terrorists. He argued that the law, which was the product of heavy lobbying by the agricultural industry, would do nothing to deter radical animal rights activism while needlessly ruining the lives of committed activists, dooming them to decades in prison for crimes that harmed no one.

On January 6, I interviewed Potter on RT America about the wildlife refuge occupation in Oregon and asked him about the potential consequences of the media, and by extension, the federal government designating Bundy and his men as “terrorists.”

“If there’s anything I walked away with [in writing my book],” Potter remarked to me, “it’s that the term [terrorist] is always used as a political weapon against the enemy of the hour. It’s a malleable term that can be manipulated and distorted based on the whims of whoever is in power… those power systems can change. And when people in power have the authority to label animal rights and environmental activists as terrorists and also label militia groups or others because of their politics it just expands that scope even further.”

“It can redefine people within the prison system,” Potter says of the term, and can lead to them being sent to “experimental prison units for people classified as ‘terrorists.’” Potter has identified the war on terror as a revival of the Red Scare, explaining how McCarthyite tactics are used to identify leftist dissidents and Muslim activists as terrorists— and how they are ultimately jailed together at maximum security federal Communications Management Units. He is the only investigative journalist to gain access to CMUs.

Potter went on to urge journalists to exercise restraint in using the word “terrorist,” rather than expanding it in an attempt to undermine the ranchers in Oregon. Potter explained that “the media coverage of the standoff has failed in the regard that it hasn’t been describing these armed militia groups as what they are,” which he described as “an armed resistance movement.”

Watch my full interview with Potter here:

Exclusive Interview: Sheriff Mack on the Oregon Standoff and What the Media Isn’t Reporting



Truth In Media’s Joshua Cook spoke with Sheriff Richard Mack Wednesday about the Hammond family of Oregon, whose conflicts with the federal government led to the widely-reported occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Burns, Oregon.

[Read more: Armed Protesters Occupy Oregon Wildlife Refuge Headquarters]

While the standoff— in which Ammon Bundy, son of Cliven Bundy, joined with other individuals to occupy the refuge headquarters to protest the re-sentencing of 73-year-old Dwight Hammond and his son, 46-year-old Steven Hammond— has been covered by news outlets nationwide, Mack provided details about the conflict between the federal government and the Hammonds that the mainstream media has largely avoided discussing, and also condemned the fact that the Hammonds were charged with arson in the first place.

[RELATED: DONEGAN: Ore. Protest Reaction Shows War on Terror Is Tearing America Apart]

While Mack said he does not agree with Ammon Bundy’s actions, he told Cook that the media is wrong to “brand and label Ammon Bundy as a nut extremist.” Mack said that he worries the current standoff may escalate into another Waco or Ruby Ridge because of the federal government’s desire to save face, adding that government orders were given to kill protesters during the standoff between the Bureau of Land Management and Cliven Bundy in Bunkerville, Nevada in 2014.

Listen to Cook’s interview with Sheriff Mack to learn more about what is really happening in Oregon.


Annabelle Bamforth contributed to this report.

Armed Protesters Occupy Oregon Wildlife Refuge Headquarters

A group of armed protesters have occupied the headquarters of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Burns, Oregon, in support of two ranchers who are scheduled to begin serving prison sentences on Monday for arson charges.

Dwight Hammond, 73, served three months and his son Steven Hammond, 46, served one year in prison after the two were convicted of arson in 2012 for lighting fires on the refuge in 2001 and 2006. The Hammonds stated that they started the fires to “reduce the growth of invasive plants and protect their property from wildfires.”

While the Hammonds were able to argue in 2012 that the five-year mandatory minimum sentence that usually comes with charges of arson on federal land was “unconstitutional”, Chief U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken ruled in Oct. 2015 that the Hammonds must each serve the mandatory five years.

Ammon Bundy, the son of rancher Cliven Bundy of Nevada, took to the Bundy Ranch Facebook page on Thursday asking supporters to come out to the refuge and encouraged “patriots” to “stand up not stand down.”

“I am wanting to talk to the individual, to the patriot,” Bundy said. “This is not a time to stand down. It is a time to stand up and come to Harney county. We need your help, and we’re asking for it. No matter what your leader says, no matter what they’re saying, you need to draw your own conclusions. You need to get to Burns on the second or before.”

Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward issued a statement Saturday night claiming that following a “peaceful rally” during the day, a group of “outside militants” seized the refuge headquarters, which is federal property managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

After the peaceful rally was completed today, a group of outside militants drove to the Malheur Wildlife Refuge, where they seized and occupied the refuge headquarters,” Ward said. “A collective effort from multiple agencies is currently working on a solution. For the time being please stay away from that area. More information will be provided as it becomes available. Please maintain a peaceful and united front and allow us to work through this situation.”

Also on Saturday night, during a telephone interview from inside the building, brothers Ammon and Ryan Bundy told the Oregonian that they had as many as 100 supporters with them, and they were not looking to hurt anyone. However, they said that they “would not rule out violence if police tried to remove them.” 

“The facility has been the tool to do all the tyranny that has been placed upon the Hammonds,” Ammon Bundy said. “We’re planning on staying here for years, absolutely. This is not a decision we’ve made at the last minute.”