Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Feds signal time may be running out after Oregon standoff arrests

A day after the spokesperson for an armed militia occupying an Oregon wildlife refuge was shot and killed during a traffic stop, the county’s sheriff lamented “there doesn’t have to be bloodshed in our community” and said he was “disappointed” that the incident “ended badly.” “We all make choices in life,” an emotional Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward said during a Wednesday news conference. “Sometimes our choices go bad.” “We don’t arm up and rebel,” he said. “We work through the appropriate channels. This can’t happen anymore. It can’t happen in America. And this can’t happen in Harney County.” The events surrounding Finicum’s death remain unclear, and officials did nothing to clarify the incident on Wednesday, taking no questions during the news conference. FBI special agent in charge Greg Bretzing placed the blame for the deteriorating situation squarely on the protesters. “It is the actions and choices of the armed occupiers of the refuge that have led us to where we are today,” Bretzing said. He added: “Actions are not without consequences." An unknown number of protesters remained at the refuge Wednesday, but members of the media began leaving after the FBI reportedly told some journalists the Bureau couldn't offer "protection." KTVZ reporter Lauren Martinez tweeted a video of her leaving the compound area with the ominous note "@FBI warns media no protection." Oregon Public Broadcasting reporter John Sepulvado tweeted ".@OPB was told by FBI that we were on our own -- essentially stuff is going down and we need to move." Earlier in the day, Jason Patrick, one of the leaders of the crew remaining at the outpost, said he could see an armored convoy and a number of law enforcement officers gathered from his perch in the compound. "Sounds like the definition of peaceful resolution is either forcefully kidnapping me or death," Patrick told USA Today. "A peaceful resolution is not dead people."...more

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