Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Oregon: Eight "Militia" Members Arrested, One Dead

One did not need to be clairvoyant to know that sooner or later the illegal seizure and occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in rural Oregon would lead to violence and bloodshed. Yesterday, it happened as eight of the lunatic, sedition loving "militia" members were arrested and one other member was killed and yet another wounded.  Others remain at the refuge facilities.  Like so many right wing groups that want to subvert the government and make themselves above the law, this group had ridiculously called itself the "Citizens for Constitutional Freedom."  In fact, the group stood for lawlessness.  Sadly, few Republicans had the spines to condemn the group and its illegal actions, self-prostitution to extremists now being a hallmark of the GOP.  The New York Times has details on yesterday's long over due arrests.  Here are highlights:

Ammon Bundy, the leader of an armed seizure of a federal wildlife refuge in rural eastern Oregon, was arrested and one person was killed Tuesday afternoon in a traffic stop in rural Oregon, the F.B.I.

Seven other people, including Mr. Bundy’s brother Ryan Bundy, were arrested, the authorities said. Another person was hospitalized with injuries that were not life-threatening.

The authorities did not identify the man who was killed, but a member of the Nevada State Assembly, Michele Fiore, who has been a supporter of the Bundy family, said on Twitter that it was LaVoy Finicum. Mr. Finicum had become a de facto spokesman for the occupiers.

Community leaders demanded that the group leave, but several members were still occupying the refuge Tuesday night.

The F.B.I. and the Oregon State Police said that Mr. Bundy, his brother and three other people, including Shawna Cox, 59, of Kanab, Utah, and Ryan Waylen Payne, 32, of Anaconda, Mont., were arrested on a state highway, but they provided no further details. Ms. Cox and Mr. Payne were prominent in speaking for the refuge. Also arrested on the highway was Brian Cavalier, 44, of Bunkerville, Nev.

The authorities said only that shots were fired during the course of the arrest. Two other people: Peter Santilli, 50, of Cincinnati, and Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy, 45, of Cottonwood, Ariz., were arrested later in Burns, and John Eric Ritzheimer, 32, turned himself in to the police in Peoria, Ariz., the authorities said. All of the defendants face a federal felony charge of conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats.

Those arrested need to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and the law breakers still at the refuge need to either leave immediately or be removed by force.  Watch to see if any of the GOP presidential candidates condemn the lawless behavior of the extremists who occupied the wildlife refuge.

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