The wildlife refuge saga is far from over

The situation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Ore., appears to be nowhere near a climax, despite Tuesday’s shooting death of the spokesman for the armed occupiers and the arrest of two Bundy brothers.

Robert “LaVoy” Finicum. (Getty photo)

The biggest question is: How did Arizona rancher Robert “LaVoy” Finicum die? While resisting arrest? Or while cooperating with his hands in the air?

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports that sources say Finicum was shot to death and Ryan Bundy wounded when they disobeyed orders to surrender and resisted arrest.

But in a YouTube recording, a young woman who says she was in Finicum’s vehicle when it was pulled over claims his hands were in the air, although he was saying to police “just shoot me.” She also claims the vehicle was riddled with bullets, so her story could rise or fall when the vehicle is shown.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting today, “The arrest of Mr. Bundy’s group turned violent when one of his supporters pulled out a weapon, law-enforcement officials familiar with the incident said. At that point, FBI agents fired. The individual who was brandishing the weapon suffered fatal injuries, officials said.”

Nevada state Assemblywoman Michele Fiore posted on Facebook: “My heart & prayers go out to LaVoy Finicum’s family. Ammon Bundy, Ryan Bundy, LaVoy Finicum, Shawna Cox, Brian Cavalier, Ryan Payne and Mark McConnell were driving on the way to meet with ranchers when they were ambushed by authorities. LaVoy Finicum had his hands up cooperating with authorities and they shot him 3 times. This is homicide and the shooter needs to be prosecuted. Ryan Bundy has been shot in the arm. Please be thoughtful with comments.”

Another Facebook page claims:

LaVoy Finicum was unarmed and had his hands in the air when he was gunned down. This is confirmed in this audio recording of an 18 year old passenger who was in one of the two vehicles.

Not only did the feds open fire while passengers were still in the vehicle, but the cars were riddled with bullets by the time the ambush was over. LaVoy got out of his vehicle with his arms in the air to approach the authorities to demand the chance to speak with the Grant County Sheriff. In response, he was shot in the face. After his body fell to the ground lifeless, the authorities continued to shoot his body.

At no point did anyone in the Bundy party threaten the authorities or shoot at them. This was a cold blooded murder. Given the number of bullet holes in the vehicles, it is clear that the feds intended to kill them all.

Finicum earlier told a reporter, “I have been raised in the country all my life. I love dearly to feel the wind on my face, to see the sun rise, to see the moon in the night. I have no intention of spending any of my days in a concrete box.”

USA Today is reporting that a Jason Patrick, one of those remaining inside the refuge, has been talking with the FBI about leaving.

“It’s hard to decide what to do,” the newspaper quotes Patrick as saying, noting that he could see a number of law enforcement officers in a convoy of armored vehicles.

“Sounds like the definition of peaceful resolution is either forcefully kidnapping me or death,” he said. “A peaceful resolution is not dead people.”

WSJ is reporting that anyone now leaving the refuge will be checked for identity and their vehicles searched. Anyone attempting to enter will be blocked unless they are local residents. Those who do not comply will be arrested.

There is supposed to be a press conference by authorities sometime today.




20 comments on “The wildlife refuge saga is far from over

  1. nyp says:

    This is the crazy guy who said he would rather die than be arrested?

    Well, I guess we ought to credit anonymous Facebook posts about the manner of his death and Michele Fiore over the word of the FBI.

  2. Patrick says:

    Sounds like the guy got exactly what he wanted; suicide by FBI.

    The other traitors have wanted martyrdom as well, but they are apparently less insistent about it.

  3. Winston Smith says:

    No doubt both of you sided with the feds during the Weaver and Waco standoffs. Or were you still living in the former Soviet Union back then?

  4. Patrick says:


    that’s what you got? Weak sauce. Perhaps you’d have sent the guys that violated property rights of another a nice thank you gift?

    When it comes to actions consistent with your idea of the Soviet Union, I think the unlawful, aggressive, anti-liberty/Constitutional ones taken by the lot of these guys in Oregon (and in Bundy land) are right there.

  5. Vernon Clayson says:

    The protesters were looking for trouble and found it but it’s too bad they didn’t have contingents of Black Lives Matter, Black Panther, or Moslem protesters with them, they’d have been treated with far greater respect and consideration. The 18 year with the “audio” recording isn’t the only recording of the incident but we won’t soon see the fed or state recordings.

  6. This gentleman claims to have been in the group of cars headed for the meeting yesterday when the arrests and shooting took place:

  7. Patrick says:

    Who supports this guy I wonder? Winston you out there?

    “A live video feed from inside the refuge showed people who alternated between angry and defeated. One man pushed close to the camera and encouraged other Americans to join.

    “Get here, get some,” he bellowed, clutching a gun in both hands. “This is history in the making. There are no laws in this United States now. This is a free-for-all Armageddon.”

  8. Rincon says:

    Add to that quote, “…if “they stop you from getting here, kill them!”

    If any more are killed, we’ll know why.

  9. Patrick says:

    I don’t understand why the tactics used in Oregon have not been used at Bundyville. And although the death of the guy up there was too bad, he seemed focused on accomplishing that goal and nothing was going to get in his way.

    Hopefully they will be soon.

  10. Patrick says:

    All criminals ought to at least try this I guess. Heck, it can’t hurt.

  11. Aerial video of shooting which occurs at about 5:45:

    Video shows Finicum lying in the snow for a couple of minutes, and cuts off before anyone tries to render medical aid.

    FBI said Finicum reached his right hand toward a pocket on the left inside portion of his jacket, where he had a loaded 9 mm semi-automatic handgun.

  12. Patrick says:

    What did you see Thomas?

  13. I did not see him “charging,” as has been alleged.

    Without audio it is hard to draw conclusions about when shots were fired or what was being said.

  14. Patrick says:

    I didn’t see him “charging” either. Didn’t see him with his hands over his head at all times either, as some supporters claimed.

    Perceptions are funny things.

  15. Steve says:

    Look again, he drove that truck off the road directly at a person.

    Strange that helicopter is (apparently) not equipped with high definition camera. 480P is the best quality the FBI could produce?

  16. Actually…that person jumped out in front of the oncoming white pick up…and it swerved farther to the left…to miss him. Though if all else fails…that will be the Feds justification for shooting him. And please…I get it, he should have stopped and kept his hands out and followed the directions of the officers.

  17. Steve says:

    That video is a great argument for body cameras on all Law Enforcement, at all times on duty, (including audio) totally out of the control of the individual L.E. involved.
    In court, no audio/video, no case.

  18. Rincon says:

    If Finicum had a pistol in his pocket as alleged, he was trying to shoot it out. If not, he was trying a Gran Torino move to make a martyr out of himself.. Either way, make a sudden move for your pocket when police have guns pointed at you, you’re either asking to die or you’re incredibly stupid. If there had been no video, the Conservatives would have been up in arms about it.

  19. Without audio…it’s still not possible to know exactly what’s really happening in the video. If Mr. Finicum was shot…his hands would instinctively go to where he’s struck, he grabs his chest. Then he’s struck from the side or back by the officer to the left and goes down. This isn’t over yet…until it’s known in what frame the shooting starts, there will be questions searching for answers.

  20. Also…from the 6:12 minute point when Mr. Finicum has been shot and is down, until the end of the video…watch how many times shots are fired into the truck. According to interviews from the occupants…they were laying on the floor fearing for their lives. Adrenaline fused overreactions and excessive force?

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