Saturday, October 15, 2016

Malheur Occupier David Fry: I Should Have Been At Fatal Traffic Stop

On the stand Friday, David Fry, the last man standing in the 41-day occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, described in detail the rising fear he felt in the Oregon standoff’s final days. In his testimony, Fry appeared to try to set himself apart from the other occupiers. He explained why he came to Harney County, his desire to leave the refuge and why he ultimately stayed. Fry and his six co-defendants all face a charge of conspiring to impede federal workers, but on the stand Fry discussed how little he knew about the people at the refuge and why they were there in the first place. "I never met these people — ever," Fry said. Fry drove across the country from the Cincinnati suburb of Blanchester, Ohio, to take part in the occupation in early January. He testified he saw the refuge as a place people were watching — somewhere he could express his views on things like the Fukushima nuclear disaster and abortion. The protest appeared non-violent to him, which was appealing, he said. "I thought it was a sit-in," Fry testified. "A sit-in?" his attorney Per Olsen asked. "Yes, a Martin Luther -style thing," Fry replied. Unlike other occupiers, Fry said he was not driven to the refuge because of public land issues. In Ohio, where Fry lives, public land battles are all but nonexistent. He was unfamiliar with the concept of adverse possession, which many occupiers cite in defense of the refuge takeover"It's more of a Western thing," Fry said. Fry's testimony detailed his initial link to the occupation, which was an online relationship he developed with Arizona rancher Robert "LaVoy" Finicum. Fry said he bought Finicum's book and the two exchanged messages on Finicum's YouTube channel. "I like the way portrayed himself. He was a good speaker," Fry testified. He added, "I was really interested in meeting him."...more

No comments: