Issues of concern to people who live in the west: property rights, water rights, endangered species, livestock grazing, energy production, wilderness and western agriculture. Plus a few items on western history, western literature and the sport of rodeo... Frank DuBois served as the NM Secretary of Agriculture from 1988 to 2003. DuBois is a former legislative assistant to a U.S. Senator, a Deputy Assistant Secretary of Interior, and is the founder of the DuBois Rodeo Scholarship.
Friday, November 11, 2016
Prosecutors confirm BLM shredded documents before Bunkerville standoff
Bureau of Land Management agents shredded sensitive documents about their roundup of Bundy family cattle in the tense hours before their April 2014 standoff with armed Bundy followers, federal prosecutors have confirmed.
In court papers late Wednesday, prosecutors said the hurried shredding occurred as agents at the impoundment site feared they were in imminent danger and about to be overrun by a crowd of angry Bundy supporters.
The shredding began the evening of April 11, 2014, and continued until BLM agents were forced to abandon the impoundment camp the next morning, BLM Agent Kent Kleman wrote in an accompanying four-page affidavit.
Among the items shredded were copies of the impoundment operations plan, maps and papers containing cellphone numbers and personal information about government employees and contractors involved in the roundup, Kleman said.
The destruction of the documents was necessary to “prevent disclosure of law enforcement sensitive information to persons engaged in criminal activity,” prosecutors wrote in their court papers. Prosecutors revealed the frantic shredding effort leading up to the standoff in papers responding to a defense motion by Dan Hill, who represents one of the leaders of the alleged assault, Cliven Bundy’s son Ammon.
Hill said in his motion that his defense investigator, Keith Gordon, had obtained bags of shredded evidence left behind by the BLM, and Hill sought to dismiss the charges against his client on grounds it amounted to the destruction of evidence in the criminal case.
But prosecutors responded that the dismissal is unwarranted and that Hill failed to establish that he has been unable to obtain copies of the shredded documents from other sources...more