Thursday, January 28, 2016

LeVoy Finicum Update: Press Conference — Statement of Greg Bretzing, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Portland

Following-up, "WATCH: Official FBI Video Shows Oregon State Trooper Shooting #Malheur Militiaman LaVoy Finicum."

And from the FBI Portland, "Statement by Greg Bretzing, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Portland, 1/28/2016":
We have quite a bit of information to share with you tonight concerning the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

First, I would like to confirm that as of this morning one more person left the refuge through a checkpoint. We believe there are four others who currently remain on the refuge. Since the establishment of checkpoints, a total of nine people have left the refuge. Of those, the FBI released six and arrested three.

Secondly, I would like to confirm that the FBI and Oregon State Police have narrowed the containment zones. This was done to make it more convenient for those who live and work in the immediate area of the refuge to go about their business. To this end, Highway 205 is now open in both directions.

There has been some media reporting that the situation at the refuge is resolved. That is NOT true. Again, we still believe there are occupiers on the refuge. The negotiators continue to work around the clock to talk to those four people in an effort to get them to come out peacefully.

Thirdly, we know there is quite a bit of interest related to the events as they occurred on Highway 395 on Tuesday afternoon. We know there are various versions of what occurred during this event: most inaccurate, some inflammatory. To that end, we want to do what we can to lay out an honest and unfiltered view of what happened and how it happened.

FBI agents and Oregon State Police troopers were involved in this operation. During this operation, OSP troopers utilized deadly force due to their proximity to LaVoy Finicum as the situation unfolded. Because of this, the Deschutes County Major Incident Team is conducting the outside review of the shooting per Oregon State law and established protocols. Because of that on-going investigation, I will not be able to answer every question you have... but hopefully we will give the public some clarity as to what occurred.

At approximately 4:25 pm on Tuesday, January 26, 2016, FBI and OSP began a law enforcement action to bring into custody the people riding in two separate vehicles as they traveled between Burns and John Day. The FBI did have a plane in the air, and what I am about to show you is a video from that plane. A couple of notes about the video before we watch it.

*The plane is following the vehicles, and the camera sometimes pans from one vehicle to the other... a white truck in front and a jeep in back. At other times when the vehicles are in a fixed location, the plane is flying in a pattern over that location. Because of that flight pattern, there are portions where trees obscure what is happening. The details that I am about to provide to you are based both on an analysis of this video and some ground-level observations of agents and troopers on the scene.

*Because the operation lasted more than 25 minutes, we are showing you two of the most pertinent clips today. The entire unedited video from the start of the traffic stop through the surrender of all individuals will be available to the media and the general public on the FBI's YouTube channel.

*Because I am using some very specific language to describe what is happening, the entire transcript of my comments will be posted to

*I want to caution you that the video does show the shooting death of LaVoy Finicum. We realize that viewing that piece of the video will be upsetting to some people, but we feel that it is necessary to show the whole thing unedited in the interest of transparency...
Keep reading.

ADDED: From the Portland Oregonian, "Live updates: FBI holds news conference on Oregon standoff."