BURNS, Ore. – In an unexpected move, the FBI released video Thursday of state police officers fatally shooting one of the armed Oregon protesters who took over a remote wildlife refuge as a sign of protest against government land-grabbing and over-reaching.
Robert “LaVoy” Finicum, 56, died Tuesday during the arrest of occupation ringleader Ammon Bundy and four others during a traffic stop near the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. His death was captured on video taken from an FBI plane that shot footage as Finicum, driving a white truck, was pursued and ultimately confronted and killed by Oregon State Police officers.
“I want to caution you that the video does show the shooting death of LaVoy Finicum,” said Greg Bretzing, the special agent in charge of the FBI field office in Portland. “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.”
He said it was “incumbent” on law enforcement to show the video of Finicum, who he said behaved recklessly and made a motion toward a gun in his coat pocket.
Supporters of the militants who took over the refuge had claimed Finicum, a rancher from Arizona who came to Oregon to support the protesters, was gunned down in cold blood. Some posts on social media have called his death an anti-government rallying cry. The FBI released the video to allay public concerns over “inflammatory” accounts of the shooting, Bretzing said.
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The FBI has released video of state police officers fatally shooting Robert “LaVoy” Finicum, one of the armed Oregon protesters. This video contains portions of the original FBI video, showing the moment Finicum was shot and killed. VPC
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