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Oregon Standoff: Last Four Occupiers Surrender At Malheur Refuge

Malheur refuge

This article comes from OregonLive.com

by Les Zaitz

UPDATE 11 a.m.: FBI confirms that final protester David Fry in custody.

***

BURNS – The occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, undertaken 41 days ago with guns and threats, ended Thursday with the peaceful surrender of  four holdouts after an hourlong negotiation with the last protester.

Those taken into custody by the FBI were David Fry, 27, of the Cincinnati area, Jeff Banta, 46, of Elko, Nevada, Sean Anderson, 47, and his wife, Sandy, 48, of Riggins, Idaho. They each face a federal conspiracy charge for their role in the occupation, joining at least 12 others already arraigned on that charge.

At the final moment after the first three had walked out, Fry said he was feeling suicidal and wouldn’t give himself up. He demanded to talk to an FBI negotiator by phone as others repeatedly urged him to calm down and walk out.

“I’m a free man and I will die a free man,” Fry said as the frantic conversation played out on a live feed online.

Over an hour, Fry rebuffed supporters again and again, saying he feared going to prison and losing his freedom.

Fry had played a role throughout the occupation  providing social media help to the protesters.

“We will pray you out,” a woman’s voice was heard saying at one point, but then Fry said he was pointing a gun at his head.

“I’m really confused right now,” he said as the entreaties continued for him to leave the refuge.

Finally, Fry said he wanted a cigarette and cookie and started walking out.

The FBI confirmed minutes later that he was in custody.

“We are all relieved our prayers were answered,” Fry’s father, Bill Fry, said in a text message to The Oregonian/OregonLive.

By contrast, the surrender of the others appeared to go off as planned.

No one was injured and no shots were fired, the FBI said in a statement.

“The occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge has been a long and traumatic episode for the citizens of Harney County and the members of the Burns Paiute tribe. It is a time for healing, reconciliation amongst neighbors and friends, and allowing for life to get back to normal,” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. attorney for the District of Oregon.

Earlier Thursday, Sandy Anderson wrote on Facebook: “It’s a very sad day for me as we plan to turn ourselves over to the very people we fought so hard against.”

Her husband said in his own post that their stand against what they believe is an overreaching federal government is coming “to an end.”

Their surrender came with the involvement of Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore and evangelist Franklin Graham. Fiore, a Republican running for Congress, spent hours on the phone with the occupiers, discussions that were transmitted live into the night via YouTube.

Graham, president of the North Carolina evangelistic operation founded by his father Billy Graham, confirmed in his own Facebook post that he expected to arrive in Oregon early Thursday.

He wrote that he had been talking to the holdouts every day for the last week, done at their request and of the FBI.

“Last night I was on the phone with them for several hours, was able to have prayer with them, and they have said they would come out today,” Graham wrote. He said he was expecting to arrive in the area of the refuge by 7 a.m.

The surrender followed days of video posts and telephone calls from the occupiers to supporters to say they would leave only if they were granted immunity.

Read more here.

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Shorty Dawkins

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11 comments

  1. I hope that this is an “wake up” call for every patriot who thinks will not be picked up sooner or latter.The “purge” has begun …

  2. I heard the last several hours on a recording of Gavin Seim’s radio show where he maintains continuous contact with the Patriots. WOW! Him, Congresswomen Michele Fiore, and Kris Anne Hall were amazing in their efforts to bring the standoff to a peaceful resolution by conversing and praying with the Patriots; who were and are themselves very, very brave. Kris Anne Hall deserves special credit and is a Godsend for America.

    I wasn’t feeling too much hope after LaVoy’s murder, but Kris Anne’s
    words to the Patriots were also words to us all, and brought hope back.

    Signed,
    Another Proud American

  3. Not sure how many listened to the live feed last night or today. I did. Fry did himself no favors and only played into the stereotype and narrative “they” are trying to portray anyone who speaks out. The other three walked out with dignity. Fry turned the end into a circus. I’m glad it ended peacefully.

    This whole thing was doomed from the start though. There is a time and place and this wasn’t it. You don’t peck a fight without knowing you can win or having a back door. I’m afraid to the masses this was just fuel for the fire for the majority. I hope I’m wrong, I hope this opened some eyes. I hope it didn’t do more harm than good.

    I’ll admit I’m not 100% up to speed on the BLM deal. I do know that a rancher in Wyoming wanted to charge me a $1000 to cross his land to get to a heard of elk we spotted sitting on BLM land. Makes it hard to be sympathetic to greed like that, but I’m not going to put all ranchers in that boat.

    Bottom line… Be smart, choose your battles, and fight to win when the odds are in your favor.

    1. I agree with the bad narrative portrayed, and with what u said. Some ranchers reap too much. The world is not perfect. I too hope all of this bares some good fruit.

  4. Les Zaitz is the “investigative reporter’ who originally started, and is 100% responsible for, the blatantly false narrative that Sheriff Palmer in Grant County set up LaVoy Finicum to be killed.

    This was the cause of the backlash against Palmer. Maybe it’s because Palmer is a constitutional Sheriff who believes in the 2nd amendment and was supportive towards the overall aim of the occupiers in their anti land grabbing stance.

    The conduct of the Oregon press was, and still is, disgraceful, tainted, biased and provocative. These individuals and organisations need to be investigated, shamed and exposed for the anti American provocateurs they are.

    Boycott their news organisations and publications. Stand up and refuse to be lied to, demand the truth, demand fairness and justice. Accept no less. Shame on you Les Zaitz. Absolute shame on you.

  5. Sheriff Richard Mack is scheduled to speak in Burns Oregon today Friday Feb. 12th at the Harney County Fairgrounds. Sheriff Mack is a good man who people respect. I’m sure his talk will have a positive effect on the people of Harney County.

  6. Editor’s Note: I have written down your number and called just now, but could only leave a message. I did leave my call back number on your machine.
    Salute!
    Elias

    Plz call me at xxx.xxx.ssss. Call anytime. Thanks

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