The Finicum Family’s Fight Is America’s Fight


On January 26, 2016 – LaVoy Perished in a hail of unprovoked bullets from the FBI and Oregon State Police. The shooting was so egregious that FBI Agent Joseph Astarita is on trial for trying to cover-up his part for shooting LaVoy. LaVoy’s wife Jeanette Finicum has filed a wrongful death lawsuit which so far seems to be moving forward.

 

Justin Smith effectively memorializes the unjust murder as a warning that there are crooked FBI personnel willing to circumvent the Constitution for their own version of law enforcement. Be wary President Trump.

 

JRH 7/27/18

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The Finicum Family’s Fight Is America’s Fight

In Pursuit of Justice

 

By Justin O. Smith

Sent 7/26/2018 8:57 PM

Updated: 7/27/2018 3:21 PM

 

Nothing in the  pursuit of justice will ever restore the Finicum Family’s joy and happiness, that they experienced, with LaVoy Finicum home and alive with them, but Jeanette Finicum has pursued justice from the day her husband was so unnecessarily shot down on a lonely stretch of Highway 395, due to his role as one of the leaders of the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Preserve.

 

VIDEO: Jeanette Finicum: Why we will fight this wrongful death case with EVERYTHING we have!

 

Posted by  LaVoy Finicum

Published on Feb 9, 2018

 

Her perseverance has resulted in the trial of Joseph Astarita, the FBI agent who fired the shots and ignited the hailstorm of bullets that ended LaVoy’s life, an ignoble act by the FBI and law enforcement who took part in the ambush, reminiscent of their action against Randy Weaver at Ruby Ridge.

 

His trial underway as of this July 24th, Astarita stands accused of falsely denying that he fired two shots at LaVoy, and he is charged with three counts of making false statements and two counts of obstruction of justice. However, through scientific methods and aerial video of the ambush, it has been determined that it was Astarita who fired the first shots, as LaVoy exited his truck, something Astarita’s lawyers still refute. They state a belief that it was one of the Oregon Highway Patrol, who fired those first shots.

 

Robert LaVoy Finicum led a small band of protesters, including Cliven Bundy’s sons, Ryan and Ammon, American Patriots, who understood that the federal government and the Bureau of Land Management were consistently and constantly acquiring or simply taking land unconstitutionally, from farmers and ranchers across America. These men and women were standing firm for property rights under Our Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution, when they occupied Malheur, near Burns, Oregon, on January 2,  2016 and began a stand-off with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies, that lasted forty-one days, detailed by Les Zaitz in The Oregonian, that lasted forty-one days.

 

 

Since they had left the refuge before without incident, they expected this day, on January 26, 2016, to be no different. Imagine their shock, when the ambush and shooting occurred soon after LaVoy, Ryan and Ammon Bundy and Shawna Cox and Victoria Sharp, along with several others, started on their way to meet peacefully with Grant County Sheriff Glenn Palmer in John Day County. They had viewed their act of civil disobedience as a simple demonstration, much less severe and dangerous than other protests generated by Black Lives Matter and Occupy Wall Street, who were destroying entire cities without any real consequence from law enforcement.

 

After successfully evading the first road block, LaVoy told his friends, “Better understand how this thing is going to end. I’m going to be laying down on the ground with my blood on the street, or I’m going to see the sheriff. We got people en route.”

 

VIDEO: GRAPHIC: Investigators Release Synced Video Of LaVoy Finicum Traffic Stop And Shooting

 

Posted by OPB

Published on Mar 8, 2016

 

 

According to Robert Cary, Astarita’s lawyer, it was at this point that one Oregon State Patrolman radioed ahead to “Officer 1” and stated, “We’re going to have to shoot LaVoy Finicum.”

 

At the second roadblock, shots rained down on LaVoy’s truck before he ever stopped, forcing him to plow into a snow bank, allegedly just narrowly missing an FBI agent. And, as he jumped from the truck, to draw fire from his friends, with his hands raised above his head, two shots rang out, one shattering the driver’s side passenger window and striking Ryan Bundy in the shoulder.

 

In Shawna Cox’s video of the ambush, one hears the police telling him to “Get down” and LaVoy yelling, “You’re gonna have to shoot me”. Cox is heard asking, “Damn it, are they shooting him? … You assholes.”

Jeanette Finicum

The April 24th 2018 amendment (see page 51, number 269) to Jeanette Finicum’s current lawsuit for the wrongful death of her husband speaks volumes:

 

“The FBI, OSP and other defendants have publicly defended the deliberate ambush and murder of LaVoy on January 26, 2016, by alleging that after he exited the vehicle, and after he had been shot with at least five lethal rounds (as well as unknown number of non-lethal rounds), and after he repeatedly placed his hands on top of his head in a surrender position; that he appeared to be reaching into his jacket.”

 

One of the most damning points within Mrs. Finicum’s complaint, found on page 33, highlights the fact that at the time of the so-called “traffic stop”, there was still no sworn affidavit or probable cause statement or indictment against LaVoy or any of his friends accompanying him. Neither was there any arrest warrant for anyone involved.

 

Witnesses are on record noting that Astarita’s face was contorted after the shooting, and he was loud and “so amped up” that a supervisor had to calm him down. Assistant U.S. Attorney Gary Sussman also noted: “Only one guy (Astarita) stood in just the right spot. … Only one guy aimed right at Robert ‘LaVoy’ Finicum’s pickup [and] fired two shots in rapid succession.”

 

Astarita’s trial follows a growing resentment among American patriots for a federal bureaucracy that is out of control, even to the point of committing sedition, possibly treason, against a sitting U.S. president. It also doesn’t help that the FBI has a long history of arbitrary, tyrannical actions, detailed by Leah Sottile, such as witnessed in 1992, when an FBI team descended on Ruby Ridge and the home of Randy Weaver, a U.S. Army Special Forces Veteran, and a sniper murdered Vicki Weaver, as she stood in the cabin doorway holding the couple’s baby.

 

Just before stepping from LaVoy’s truck, hands raised, Ryan Payne looked out and saw LaVoy lying in the snow. He turned towards Shawna Cox and Victoria Sharp and said, “LaVoy is dead.”

 

It doesn’t really matter, in the end, whose bullets killed LaVoy, because it shouldn’t have ended like this anyway. LaVoy had time and again stated a desire to make sure that the stand-off ended peacefully, and up until the day of the ambush, there wasn’t any reason to believe that it wouldn’t, since LaVoy had been in constant contact with Sheriff Glenn Palmer, who was quite sympathetic to the cowboy’s cause. These men weren’t “anti-government”; they were anti-tyranny.

 

During the 2016 trial that acquitted Ammon Bundy and six other defendants, the FBI and Oregon Highway Patrol both testified they could not have identified specific legal reasons for the stop. This can only mean that had law enforcement not escalated the situation, LaVoy Finicum would have also been acquitted and alive and well at home with his family.

 

Robert Lavoy Finicum was willing to die for his ideas, the Constitution and freedom, and as we rise to a new sun each day, we must work in this America, the home of the brave and the land of the free, to ensure that not any future Democrat led administration, or any administration, can ever target conservative protests in such an egregious manner, impeding liberty each step of the way and executing us at will. The Finicum’s fight to hold the federal government accountable for its arrogant lawlessness, dishonesty and violence is America’s fight.

 

LaVoy was a good man, gunned down in cold blood. And whether or not any degree of justice comes out of this trial, God’s accounting awaits each of us one day. I pray to God justice be served and the Finicum Family finds peace of mind and heart.

 

By Justin O. Smith

______________________

Edited by John R. Houk

Text embraced by brackets and source links are by the Editor.

 

© Justin O. Smith

 

The Hammond Ranchers Pardoned by Trump


John R. Houk

© July 11, 2018

 

Members of the Hammond family pose outside a ranch building on their property in Harney County in this undated photo. Steven Hammond, second from left, and his father, Dwight Hammond Jr., center, were pardoned Tuesday, July 10, 2018, by President Donald Trump. (Hammond family) [Photo from OregonLive]

 

President Trump gave pardons to Oregon ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond. Many, including myself, consider their convictions a huge blight on the Justice system. The Hammond family had a long dispute with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) over cattle grazing and land management. They were actually convicted on terrorism charges because protecting their land from BLM started brush fires, they started their own fire on their own land. The Hammond fire slipped onto BLM managed Federal land. The BLM decided to make an example of the Hammonds undoubtedly to scare other ranchers in the Western States who also have long disputed BLM authority and practices.

 

The Hammonds actually pleaded guilty to the arson charges, but the original Judge saw how frivolous the Hammond fire was to Federal land, the gave very light sentencing. The light sentence ticked someone off in the Obama DOJ. Western Prosecutors appealed the short sentence which resulted in stiffer punishment that extended to years.

 

The incident of re-sentencing sparked a rancher rebellion in Oregon centered around the occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge.

 

I found out about the pardons from the Freedom Outpost which I am cross posting. However, the local Oregon media under Oregon Live has greater detail.

 

JRH 7/11/18

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Trump Pardons Hammonds!

 

By TIM BROWN 

JULY 10, 2018

Freedom Outpost

 

Now, this is good news!  On Tuesday, President Trump Oregon cattle ranchers, Dwight and Steven Hammond, who had been serving sentences for arson.

 

Statement from the White House read as follows:

 

Today, President Donald J. Trump signed Executive Grants of Clemency (Full Pardons) for Dwight Lincoln Hammond, Jr., and his son, Steven Hammond.  The Hammonds are multi-generation cattle ranchers in Oregon imprisoned in connection with a fire that leaked onto a small portion of neighboring public grazing land.  The evidence at trial regarding the Hammonds’ responsibility for the fire was conflicting, and the jury acquitted them on most of the charges.

 

At the Hammonds’ original sentencing, the judge noted that they are respected in the community and that imposing the mandatory minimum, 5-year prison sentence would “shock the conscience” and be “grossly disproportionate to the severity” of their conduct.  As a result, the judge imposed significantly lesser sentences.  The previous administration, however, filed an overzealous appeal that resulted in the Hammonds being sentenced to five years in prison.  This was unjust.

 

Dwight Hammond is now 76 years old and has served approximately three years in prison.  Steven Hammond is 49 and has served approximately four years in prison.  They have also paid $400,000 to the United States to settle a related civil suit.  The Hammonds are devoted family men, respected contributors to their local community, and have widespread support from their neighbors, local law enforcement, and farmers and ranchers across the West.  Justice is overdue for Dwight and Steven Hammond, both of whom are entirely deserving of these Grants of Executive Clemency.

 

Well, it took long enough, but thank you President Trump.  You did the right thing in this matter.

 

And for all those who took the time to keep this story alive and urge people to petition the White House on behalf of the Hammonds, thank you!

 

It should be noted that the protests that took place in Oregon a couple of years ago were a response to the injustice the Hammonds faced.  As a result, Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was killed by Oregon State Police.

 

Those who led the protest were all acquitted of all charges and reporter Pete Santilli had all of his charges dismissed.   No doubt, Finicum would have been found not guilty as well, but that’s not how tyrants work, is it?

 

Today is a day to celebrate a wrong that has not been fully made right, but has definitely turned in the right direction!

 

Article posted with permission from The Washington Standard.

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Trump pardons Oregon ranchers whose case sparked Bundy takeover of refuge

 

By Maxine Bernstein

July 10, 2018 9:33 AM – UPDATED July 11, 2018 7:55 AM

The Oregonian/OregonLive

 

President Donald Trump on Tuesday pardoned two eastern Oregon ranchers serving time in federal prison for setting fire to public land in a case that inflamed their supporters and gave rise to the armed takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

 

Dwight Hammond Jr., 76, and son Steven Hammond, 49, walked out of a federal prison in California about 6 1/2 hours later. They were convicted in 2012 of arson on Harney County land where they had grazing rights for their cattle. They were ordered back to prison in early 2016 to serve out five-year sentences.

 

“The Hammonds are devoted family men, respected contributors to their local community and have widespread support from their neighbors, local law enforcement and farmers and ranchers across the West,” the White House said in a statement. “Justice is overdue for Dwight and Steven Hammond, both of whom are entirely deserving of these Grants of Executive Clemency.”

 

Susie Hammond, Dwight’s wife and Steven’s mother, said she was sound asleep when a call from U.S. Rep. Greg Walden awakened her Tuesday morning. “He said it’s a done deal, the papers were signed,” she said. “We’ve been waiting a long time. I think it’s wonderful.”

 

Though Susie Hammond believed her husband and son had a strong case for clemency, she was reluctant to get her hopes up.

 

“I’ve just been sitting here, on the phone since,” she said. “I still can’t believe it. I won’t believe it until I see them.”

 

Walden said he looks forward to welcoming the Hammonds back to Oregon.

 

“Today is a win for justice and an acknowledgement of our unique way of life in the high desert, rural West,” he said. “I applaud President Trump for thoroughly reviewing the facts of this case, rightly determining the Hammonds were treated unfairly and taking action to correct this injustice.”

 

Trump’s move marks yet another big victory for backers of the Hammonds, including Ammon Bundy and his followers who repeatedly cited the case as the trigger for the 41-day occupation of the wildlife refuge that abuts the Hammond family ranch. A jury acquitted him and other key takeover figures of all federal charges.

 

“The true reason the Hammonds have suffered has not been corrected. It must be corrected,” Bundy said. He pledged to continue to fight against the federal government’s “control over land and resources inside our states.”

 

Both Hammonds were convicted of setting a fire in 2001, and the son was convicted of setting a second fire in 2006. A federal judge initially sentenced the father to three months in prison and the son to one year after they successfully argued that the five-year mandatory minimum was unconstitutional.

 

They served the time and were out of prison when prosecutors challenged the shorter terms before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and won. Another federal judge in 2015 sent the ranchers back to complete the full sentences.

 

According to the Trump administration, federal prosecutors who challenged the Hammonds’ original sentences filed “an overzealous appeal.”

 

“This was unjust,” the White House said.

 

The Hammond family also said in a statement that they hoped the pardon will “help signal the need for a more measured and just approach by federal agents, federal officers and federal prosecutors – in all that they do.”

 

Amanda Marshall, who was Oregon’s U.S. attorney when the appeal occurred, defended it and said she was disturbed by Trump’s pardons.

 

“It means their conviction doesn’t exist. I find that incredibly troubling,” Marshall said. “I think it’s a slap in the face to the people in Pendleton who served on that jury and a slap in the face to the Constitution.”

 

Marshall said the Hammonds’ first sentences veered from the mandatory minimum set by Congress. The trial judge’s decision to issue shorter sentences violated the law, she said.

 

Jennifer Rokala, executive director of the Center for Western Priorities, also criticized Trump’s decision, saying it sends a “dangerous message” to America’s park rangers, wildland firefighters and public land managers.

 

“President Trump, at the urging of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, has once again sided with lawless extremists who believe that public land does not belong to all Americans,” Rokala said.

 

As of this month, Dwight Hammond has served two years and nine months in prison and 31 months of supervised release. His son has served three years and four months in prison and two years of supervised release.

 

“I am very happy for the entire Hammond family, who I have known and respected for 25 years,” said attorney Larry Matasar, who represents Steven Hammond. “I hope that Dwight and Steven will soon be able to continue their work on the Hammond Ranch.”

 

Attorney Kendra Matthews, who represents Dwight Hammond Jr., said the pardon is “a just and proper resolution of the Hammonds’ criminal prosecution and we are thrilled that the Hammond family will soon be reunited.”

 

Susie Hammond had heard several weeks earlier that Trump was considering a pardon. At the time, she said she had a “sense that things are moving forward and I have faith in our president. If anyone is going to help them, he’d be the one.”

 

Ryan Bundy, who joined his brother Ammon as a leader of the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, said the pardons were “long overdue. It’s time. It’s overtime.”

 

Bundy said he and others would like to return to Burns to give the Hammonds a “hero’s welcome” when they get out of Terminal Island Federal Correctional Institution in San Pedro, Calif.

 

In clemency petitions, lawyers for the Hammonds cited the ranchers’ longtime service to their community, the severity of their punishment, the trial judge’s support and their family situation.

 

“Unlike some cases where clemency may outrage the community, clemency for the Hammonds would be embraced by the Oregon community, both rural and urban,” Matasar wrote.

 

The lengthy sentences, plus the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s refusal in 2014 to renew a grazing permit for the Hammond ranch, have crippled the operation, the family has said. The Hammonds have appealed the federal agency’s denial.

 

“If the Hammonds are unable to return to the ranch in the near future, the legacy and livelihood Dwight and Steven Hammond have been building for their family could truly be lost,” Matasar wrote in his petition. “A clemency would not only serve as a balm to the community’s angst about these sentences, but very practically, give the Hammonds a real chance to keep their ranch afloat.”

 

Dwight Hammond set a prescribed burn on about 300 acres of his own land that then traveled onto Bureau of Land Management property and burned an additional 139 acres, his lawyer wrote. The elder Hammond said he was trying to fend off invasive species.

 

Prosecutors argued the fire also was to cover up illegal deer poaching and got out of control, placing firefighters who had to be airlifted out of the area in grave danger.

 

The federal pursuit of the Hammonds followed years of permit violations and unauthorized fires, and they never accepted responsibility, Marshall said.  The Hammonds could have faced less than a year in prison under a plea offer they declined, she said.

 

The Hammonds’ lawyers pointed out in their clemency petitions that the father and son faced other sanctions. They paid $400,000 in 2015 to settle a civil suit brought by the government and are having a hard time sustaining the cattle operation because of the grazing permit denial.

 

They cited the opinion of the trial judge, U.S. District Judge Michael Hogan, who found the five-year sentences “grossly disproportionate to the severity of the offenses here” and noted that the fires didn’t endanger any people or property.

 

Prosecutors argued the fires did endanger others. When the government won the appeal of the Hammonds’ lower sentences, Acting U.S. Attorney Billy Williams issued a release, saying that the fires illegally set on public lands, even in remote areas, endanger firefighters called to respond. Marshall said “firefighters were in grave danger and had to be dramatically evacuated” after the fires set by the Hammonds.

 

Williams was asked by the Office of the Pardon Attorney to submit a written brief summarizing the Hammond litigation and his office’s position on the Hammonds’ clemency requests. He prepared a brief and submitted it, but his office declined to release it or summarize what Williams’ position was, calling the document privileged.

 

Williams also declined any comment Tuesday about Trump’s pardons.

 

Steven Grasty, a former Harney County commissioner, said he’s glad the Hammond saga has come to an end. He said he disagreed with first sentence, but didn’t see the value of sending the Hammonds back to prison after they had served their initial term.

 

“I’m really proud of the efforts of our community, Greg Walden, the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association,” Grasty said.

 

But he said the pardons shouldn’t be considered a win for the Bundys. “The Bundys complicated this. They made it worse. The Bundys didn’t know the Hammonds. They used them.”

 

Among those who wrote letters of support for the Hammonds’ clemency petitions were Walden, Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward, Malheur County Sheriff Brian Wolfe as well as leaders of the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association and Oregon Farm Bureau.

 

Ward, who was the face of law enforcement during the 2016 occupation of the wildlife refuge in his county, wrote to the White House that he personally felt the initial sentences and the financial penalties “covered the debt owed to society.”

 

“This case was thrust into the national spotlight when, for lack of a better term, anti-government extremists exploited the Hammond family and began attempting to use their unfortunate circumstance to gain support for their own agendas,” Ward wrote.

 

He noted that Dwight and Steven Hammond rejected pressure they faced from Ammon Bundy and others to defy federal orders and instead turned themselves in to prison.

 

“It is my humble opinion that justice would be better served if these gentlemen were afforded the opportunity to return home,” Ward wrote. “For Dwight to spend his remaining years with his wife. For Steven to return to his family … and to set an example that along with being a nation of laws, we are a nation of compassion and forgiveness.”

 

On Tuesday, Ward said he was “happy for their families and I respect the decision, as it is a responsible and lawful use of our governmental system. … Now please allow this community to move on.”

 

Other letters of support described good deeds done for their neighbors, children and grandchildren’s schools, the county’s 4H and FFA clubs and many others in need. They spoke of Dwight Hammond’s sincerity, decency, his humility and the respect for him in Harney County — a man who dressed up as Santa Claus for schoolkids and what one friend described as “a real life John Wayne.”

 

Dwight Hammond’s wife, who is ailing, lives alone in Burns. Steven Hammond is married with three children.

 

“I am seeking commutation of my sentence so that I can return home to take care of my wife,” Dwight Hammond wrote. “I live in fear that one of us will pass before we are reunited.”

 

Trump’s action follows a flurry of pardons, including for Dinesh D’Souza, a conservative author convicted of illegal campaign contributions; I. Lewis Libby Jr., a former aide to Vice President Dick Cheney; former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio; and Alice Johnson, 63, serving life for her role in a cocaine distribution ring.

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The Hammond Ranchers Pardoned by Trump

John R. Houk

© July 11, 2018

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Trump Pardons Hammonds!

 

Tim Brown is an author and Editor at FreedomOutpost.comSonsOfLibertyMedia.comGunsInTheNews.com and TheWashingtonStandard.com. He is husband to his “more precious than rubies” wife, father of 10 “mighty arrows”, jack of all trades, Christian and lover of liberty. He resides in the U.S. occupied Great State of South Carolina. . Follow Tim on Twitter. Also check him out on Gab and Steemit

 

Copyright © 2018 FreedomOutpost.com

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Trump pardons Oregon ranchers whose case sparked Bundy takeover of refuge

 

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One Quiet Man’s Fight for Freedom


in-memory-of-lavoy-finicum-american-patriot

It was about a year ago that LaVoy Finicum was shot to death by Federal and Oregon State law enforcement UNJUSTLY. Justin reminds us that government tyranny is very possible in America – especially in an America that has a Dem Party Administration that has consistently lied to Americans for EIGHT YEARS.

 

JRH 1/24/17

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One Quiet Man’s Fight for Freedom

 

By Justin O. Smith

Sent 1/23/2017 7:38 AM

 

Destroyers are they who lay snares for many, and call it the state … ” — Nietzsche

 

Americans should pause and take some time to recall and celebrate the life of Robert LaVoy Finicum, an American patriot, who loved his family, God and country. He placed his life on the line in defense of all Americans’ right to ‘life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness’, joining the ranks of thousands of other ranchers who have been fighting the overreaches of the federal government and the tyranny of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for the past forty years. Robert LaVoy Finicum died on January 26th, 2016, one day before his 55th birthday, defending the U.S. Constitution and this America he loved so well.

 

By all accounts, LaVoy Finicum was “a quiet man who worked his to-do list from sun-up to sundown” (The Oregonian) and had a “light reading” list that included many history books, the U.S. Constitution and Alexis de Tocqueville’s ‘Democracy in America’. He also thoroughly enjoyed his big family – his wife and eleven children – and their evening discussions on the Scriptures, the Constitution and the Founding Fathers’ ideas on freedom.

 

Although Finicum had generally viewed his interaction with the BLM to be “very good” over the years, he became active in opposing them in 2014, after the BLM fined him $12,000 and claimed his cattle had grazed on federal lands past his allotted permit time. He was also heavily influenced by his own research into the BLM and the high-handed tactics he witnessed the BLM employ against the Bundy family in 2014.

 

Finicum rode with Cliven and Ammon Bundy on their Nevada Ranch in April of 2014, along with hundreds of other supporters, in order to reinforce the fact that Bundy’s grazing and water rights, documented in an 1878 title, predated any BLM claims and had to be honored by the BLM. And when the BLM moved along Interstate 15 to confiscate Bundy’s cattle on April 5th, Finicum, the Bundy family members and well-armed supporters stopped them cold where they stood; this would become a sore-point for the FBI that carried over to the Malheur Wildlife Reserve occupation in 2016 and the stand-off near Burns, Oregon.

 

After the Bundy Ranch Stand-Off, LaVoy Finicum said: “I had to do a lot of soul searching. I realized that Cliven Bundy was standing on a very strong constitutional principle, and yet, here I was continuing to pay a grazing fee to the BLM.”

 

Finicum and the Bundy clan understood that the Enclave Clause [Thoughts from 2014 & 2016] (Article I, Section 8, Clause 17 of the Constitution) did not allow government bureaucrats to act like kings and ignore the 9th and 10th Amendments, and it did not authorize the BLM to arbitrarily seize the water rights, cattle and property of ranchers and arrogantly nullify 200 years of constitutional history. They understood, much like the U.S. Supreme Court (New York v. U.S.), that the Constitution is not a tool to protect the sovereignty of the State or for the benefit of government officials, but rather, the Constitution secures all Americans’ liberties through the diffusion of sovereign power.

 

However, the BLM sees things differently. Many cases spanning the years can be found, that are similar to Raymond Yowell’s experience. The BLM garnished the $200 Social Security check of this former chief of the Shoshone Indian Tribe and seized 132 head of his cattle in 2002, for grazing “unlawfully” on government lands. The BLM sold Yowell’s cattle at auction and pocketed the money.

 

Between 2006 and 2012, the BLM had intimidated and finally charged Steven and Dwight Hammond with nine federal counts of arson for setting backfires on their own lands that supposedly spread to federal land. The Hammonds were subsequently imprisoned, released and then sent back to prison, even though the facts illuminated that some of those out-of-control backfires actually originated with BLM employees, in an attempt to stop several lightning strike fires such as the Granddad fire that burned 46,000 acres.

 

Politics played heavily in the cases regarding Steven and Dwight Hammond, because the BLM wanted the Hammond ranch. Gold mining companies like Calico Resource USA out of Vancouver, Canada and uranium mining concerns like Australian owned Oregon Energy LLC had their eyes on the area, and the BLM was hoping to profit and grow more powerful through the General Mining Law of 1872.

 

All the great ideas and principles that shaped America went with LaVoy Finicum, as he and many other American Patriots occupied Oregon’s Malheur (French for “misfortune” or “tragedy”) National Wildlife Refuge, about 30 miles from Burns, Oregon, in order to force the return of 188,000 acres to local control and the release of the Hammond brothers from prison. They acted through peaceful, political protest, even though they were armed to ensure the security of their protest, and they advocated for property and states’ rights, as they took a hard stand against federal ownership of 250 million acres in America and years of oppression by the BLM and several other government agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency.

 

Twenty-five days into the protest, Robert LaVoy Finicum, Ammon and Ryan Bundy, Shawna Cox, Ryan Payne and Victoria Sharp headed to John Day, Oregon for a “singing” and a meeting with Grant County Sheriff Glenn Palmer to discuss their demands, explain their views to local people and seek a peaceful end to the stand-off. But they were ambushed along the way by the Oregon State Patrol and the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team, which used combat-grade operation protocols rather than “civilian” deadly force standards, firing once without warning at the initial stop, according to many witnesses, and numerous times at the second roadblock using concussion and live rounds.

 

Does this remind anyone else of Ruby Ridge and the murders of Randy Weaver’s wife and son by the FBI?

 

If the federal authorities had been serious about desiring a peaceful resolution to this conflict, they could have coordinated with Sheriff Palmer to arrest Finicum, if just cause existed for an arrest (they knew Finicum’s destination). Instead they chose to shoot him numerous times and refuse him medical attention from Victoria Sharp, a trained EMT and his friend, as he lay on the snowy ground dying. They murdered LaVoy on a lonely, desolate stretch of Highway 395.

 

If the FBI had negotiated LaVoy Finicum’s peaceful surrender, as they certainly could have, he would simply have been taken into custody and released after his acquittal by a jury, just in the same manner that a jury acquitted his so-called “co-conspirators” in October 2016, including Ammon Bundy and a friend and activist, Shawna Cox. And, it should alarm everyone that the HRT agents initially concealed the fact they had fired their weapons during the stop.

 

Upon her release, Shawna Cox made a plea before a mass of TV cameras and supporters, imploring: “We have to be vigilant people. Wake up America, and help us restore the Constitution. Don’t sleep with your head in the sand.

 

Isn’t it odd that FBI agents, who are sworn to protect and defend the U.S. Constitution — lawyers all — regularly side with government imposed tyranny against U.S. citizens?

 

Arianna Finicum Brown, LaVoy’s 27 year old daughter, stated shortly after his death: “My Dad was such a good man, through and through. He would never want to hurt somebody, but he does believe in defending freedom and he knew the risks involved.

 

During LaVoy’s funeral, his brother, Guy Finicum remarked on LaVoy’s deep faith in God, adding: “He has absolute confidence that he will be with his family again. He believes that as much as he believes the sun will rise. And that’s what gave him the ability to do what he did. He always looked at a higher goal.”

 

When any government, including ours, puts forth its strength on the side of injustice and murders fine men like LaVoy Finicum, it reveals itself as a mere brute force, and it becomes apparent more than ever that tyranny rules. And other patriots are served warning to desist their opposition or meet the same fate.

 

And what are Americans to think of a government to which all the truly brave and just men in the land are enemies, standing between it and those whom it oppresses?

 

Robert LaVoy Finicum did not recognize unjust human laws, and he persistently stood for the dignity of human nature, knowing himself for a man, the equal of any government. He regularly fought against established injustices and the hypocrites of bureaucracies who seemed to ask, “Why do you assault us”. And LaVoy’s death — the death of an American hero — was like the planting of a good seed, and it is giving rise to a new crop of American heroes.

 

By Justin O. Smith

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Youtube video added by Blog Editor:

 

VIDEO: Video shows two camera angles of LaVoy Finicum shooting

 

Posted by The Oregonian

Published on Mar 8, 2016

 

In a video shown at a Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office press conference today, the aerial FBI video of the LaVoy Finicum shooting has been synced with a cellphone video Shawna Cox recorded from within Finicum’s truck.

 

The rest is The Oregonian subscription & social media information

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Edited by John R. Houk

All source links are by the Editor and all text enclosed by brackets are by the Editor.

 

© Justin O. Smith