Tuesday, March 29, 2016, Bend, OR; Salt Lake City, UT; Las Vegas, NV; and Fredonia, AZ -- Eyewitnesses of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge occupation held four simultaneous news conferences in four states today to reject the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's (US F&WS) claims that there were $6 million in damages left behind at the refuge.
Las Vegas, NV eyewitnesses include Nevada State Assembly members John Moore and Shelly Shelton, and Stand By Me for Liberty Rally organizer Karen Steelmon.
Bend, OR eyewitnesses include former Harney County Fire Chief Chris Briels and Committee of Safety members Dwayne Schrock, Linsay Tyler and William Wilson.
Salt Lake City, UT eyewitnesses include founder of the oldest women's gun rights organization Janalee Tobias and Thara Finicum Tenney, LaVoy Finicum's oldest daughter.
Fredonia, AZ eyewitnesses include Shawna Cox, whose camera has become the centerpiece of evidence for the murder of LaVoy Finicum, LaVoy's brother Guy Finicum, and Sharla Christie.
On Wednesday, March 23, 2016, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released photos from inside the refuge falsely accusing ranchers LaVoy Finicum, Ammon Bundy and others in the peaceful occupation, of causing $6 million in damages.
There is another side to this story.
SIX MILLION DOLLAR TAXPAYER FRAUD AND COVER-UP
Evidence shows that the U.S. F&WS used photos to justify a $6 million taxpayer-funded money grab. They represented that they took these photos after the occupation ended, when in fact they were taken by the occupiers themselves when they arrived at the refuge to document the disarray and neglect.
Given the information we now have, the FBI and the US F&WS have clearly committed fraud with intent to cover up their mis-conduct, deceive the taxpayers and incriminate the innocent.
Those involved in this government cover up must be investigated and prosecuted.
In addition, photo and video evidence collected proves that rancher LaVoy Finicum and Ammon Bundy and their followers being held in jail without bond are innocent and we demand their release.
Numerous testimonies from eyewitnesses at the refuge show no damage reported. After LaVoy Finicum was murdered, according to one of the “Final Four” Sandy Anderson, “They [the remaining occupiers] abandoned their belongings and fled for their lives. There was no damage, only minimal disarray left behind. They didn’t have much time.” She also commented that federal officials appear to have tampered with evidence by ransacking their camp site and damaging their property, "running it over with a bulldozer."
Especially since the establishment of the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and the DHS have built reputations for unconstitutional searches and seizures, labeling the victims "domestic terrorists" or "anti-government militants," ransacking homes and causing permanent damage to private property. These unconstitutional acts terrorize citizens without arrest warrants, violating the Fourth Amendment protections, which was also the case with the citizens of Harney County. The occupiers were the peaceful protestors; it is the federal government - the FBI and its contractors - that must be held responsible.
Ample photos and videos have been assembled that show the "before-and-after" and the disarray of the refuge before the occupation began. Once again, unelected government bureaucrats have found another way to grab funding and waste our hard-earned money.
This spectacle was nothing more than a multimillion dollar Academy award winning production in the fiction category, directed by the FBI and its contractors, featuring a cast of characters from the Oregon State Police, intentionally terrorizing the people to try this case in the media. This matter will be tried constitutionally - in a Court of law.
It wasn’t the ranchers. It wasn’t LaVoy, Ammon, Ryan and the other leaders. That’s not who they are.
Supporters are demanding a line item accounting of this taxpayer funded grab. “We’re asking for transparency and disclosure. We want the procurement applications, the invoices and the proof that justifies the outrageous bill we are paying. The occupiers were peaceful. At no time did they brandish guns. It was the federal government that brought in the military equipment and SWAT teams that we are now told cost over $2 and a quarter million! It was the presence of military artillery and vehicles that terrified the townspeople.
They claim 17 employees and their families were in danger of their lives and that they had to be relocated to hotels. Price tag: $2 million. You will not find a single occupier that will tell you LaVoy Finicum, Ammon and Ryan Bundy were dangerous men.
The American people are outraged when they learn the facts. They are rallying in all 50 states to question the integrity of the bureaucrats that run the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The federal government needs to be accountable for the costs of the supposed “restoration” of the refuge.
CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS
The Audubon Society, an extremist environmentalist NGO that benefits from and advocates for an unconstitutional federal and international take-over of private property, recently called for volunteers to assist with the clean up. At the same time, the refuge was off-limits to the ranchers' movement, which had hundreds of volunteers willing to donate time to clean up at no cost to taxpayers.
During the 41 days of the occupation, ranchers and patriots did not break any laws. They actually improved the condition of the refuge after the government employees let it fall into disrepair. One of the visitors to the refuge, Nevada Assemblyman John Moore commented, “The government bears the burden of proof, and taking this case to the media is not a Court of law where physical proof is actually required.”
“This is not about grass, trash or cows,” said Sharla Christie (Kanab, UT) a visitor at the refuge during the occupation. “It’s about freedom. LaVoy’s and Ammon’s message is about how government has disregarded our laws. The FEDS are violating the law, not the ranchers or the people that supported this protest.”
Chris Briels and others speaking at the multi-state news conferences agree. They know what it looked like and they say these ranchers did nothing to damage the area. He saw them continually cleaning and fixing the place up, from the corral that was filled with horse manure when they arrived, to the kitchen area that was always in order.”
“We took pictures while were there. I know my father,” said Thara Tenney, LaVoy’s oldest daughter. “He was a meticulous man, and he ran a tight ship at the refuge. If people wanted to eat, they first needed to do their part in keeping the refuge well cared for.”
“I saw nothing that was being damaged,” said Janalee Tobias, the founder of the oldest women’s gun rights group in America. “I originally went to make sure they were not doing anything that would create fear or provoke violence, as we were being told in the news. When I arrived, I saw that Ammon and LaVoy had set up everything so calm and peaceful and well-organized. They spent most of their days teaching the locals about how their elected leaders were violating the Constitution and taking away their rights. From the Hammonds to the Bundy’s, what have these people done to deserve the crimes for which they have been put in jail? What has Dave Bundy done? He took pictures of federal agents. Since when is taking pictures a crime that puts you in jail in solitary confinement without bail?”
Sandy Anderson, one of the "Final Four" whose husband Sean is still in a Portland Oregon jail, commented on her reaction to the US F&WS photos. “It looks as though they took our camp site, trashed it and then ran a bulldozer over it. The night LaVoy was murdered, people were fleeing the refuge and left everything behind – no time to pack or take anything with them. They were in fear for their lives. Nothing there was damaged.”
Testimony of LaVoy Finicum's Family.
Courtesy Gavin Seim:
— Gavin video examining evidence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hET0PbgTPes
— USFWS Photos on Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwspacific/sets/72157666329058515
— RT Interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sX-X1hkXcRQ
— Rat Infestation: https://www.facebook.com/bundyranch/videos/948065921936883/
— David Fry assasination day: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuyPkKv2fPg
— 01/26 Drone Footage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NCqHCvgUnk
— Patriots Cleaning Barn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8LoS16XG3U
— LaVoy outside building the day before: https://www.facebook.com/bundyranch/videos/951100138300128/
— Kitchen Walk through: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqaYAsEbisw
— David Fry walk though night of attack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuyPkKv2fPg
— Tribal member inspecting artifacts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJ2J8JW93F0
From Gary Hunt:
Photos from the Refuge taken and posted by the occupiers to document the state of the refuge when they arrived, and then used by the US F&WS as "evidence" of damage done by occupiers
From LaVoy Finicum's YouTube Channel - A Complete Compilation of his Videos, inlcuding videos he took at the Malheur Refuge as documentation:
From Monte Wells:
The Federal Restitution Scam
Facebook Blain Cooper video, one of the pictures the authorities are using to blame the cowboys is used from this video.
Video showing kitchen while they were there:
Pete Santilli 2 hour video of them cleaning the garage. 6 inch deep rat poop:
Pete Santilli From 28:44 - 40:22 mins Shows cleaning of storage area
Dwain cleaning the barn more detail:
Dwain cleaning the barn:
LaVoy talking about preservation of the property:
STATEMENT OF GUY FINICUM
My Experience in Oregon at the Malheur Reserve
My name is Guy Finicum. On January 6, 2016 I contacted the Harney County Sheriff’s department and expressed my desire to visit the Malheur Refuge to see if I, with a team of friends, could “help” with the situation there. I received a call back from a Mark Maxwell from the FBI who, through a series of calls and voice mails, told me that I was free to go up there, and that it was my right.
We started our journey that night and arrived in Burns late in the evening of January 7th. Early that morning before daylight, we attempted to stop by the Sheriff’s department to let them know that we had arrived. We were unable to even get to the Sheriff’s Department because it was barricaded off, so we went on out to the refuge.
Upon arriving, we found the place to be very peaceful and orderly. We were welcomed and had the privilege of spending the whole day of January 8th with the occupiers. I attended several meetings with the leadership. First with LaVoy where he explained to us what his purpose was there. That exchange was videoed and is available on the web. I then attended a meeting with the leadership consisting of LaVoy, Ammon Bundy, Ryan Bundy, Shawna Cox, and Ryan Payne and two others whose names I don’t recall. During that meeting I learned what their intent and plan for the occupation was. Also in that meeting, I gained some insight into the character of Ammon Bundy. A person entered the room and showed Ammon a money pouch with cash in it that the individual had found in one of the offices. When asked if it could be used to pay for the trash hauling service, Ammon stated that it was not to be used because it did not belong to them. It was also in this meeting where Ammon talked about ongoing efforts to clean up the equipment shop and to address general maintenance and upkeep issues.
The next meeting I sat in on was with Ammon and LaVoy and several other key players as Ammon shared with us all the happening of the previous several months when he had first started trying to help the Hammonds. Ammon said that he had talked to witnesses and had followed every legal process he could to address new information he had uncovered, but was met with resistance and non-cooperation from all levels of government. During these efforts, Ammon reported that he had learned of many other abuses by federal agents in relation to property and civil rights over the past 20 years. Ammon said that he could not in good conscience return home knowing what he had learned and do nothing, and that is when he first entertained the idea of a civil disobedience occupation of the reserve.
I was able to sit in on several other meetings as well that day, and I was privileged to watch the leadership there interacting with Harney County residents, and I also observed a press conference. The last place I visited was where the meals were being prepared and served where things were also very clean and orderly. I must admit that a place covered by 6 to 8 inches of snow has a very clean look, but the snow was several days old and there was no evidence of litter or abuse of property in any way. Some of the offices and rooms I entered were cluttered, but it was clearly evident that the clutter was there prior to the occupation.
The overall attitude of the people there that day was friendly and welcoming. I also observed children playing in the snow and interacting in a happy and carefree manner. Some of my brother’s children and grandchildren had come to visit him that day, as did my elderly mother and father. I saw the relief in my parents’ eyes as they were able to witness firsthand what was really going on, as prior to that they had been troubled by what the media was portraying.
I will gladly testify before any authority to the truth of what I saw there that day. These men and women were peaceful, respectful and conscientious, and they were doing their very best to take care of a facility that they felt belonged to the people of Harney County. There is no question that it was an act of civil disobedience, but it was clearly being carried out with the highest of ideals and with sincere respect and love for their fellow-men.
The final thing I did that day at the Malheur Reserve was give my brother a hug, and tell him how much I loved him... for the last time.
-- Submitted by Guy R. Finicum