FBI Looks Terrible in Killing of Rancher LaVoy Finicum



The FBI looks terrible in the death of Robert LaVoy Finicum who was shot and killed by police during a refuge occupation in Oregon in 2016. Several issues of concern have surfaced: the FBI agent lied about shooting Mr. Finicum and firing at the truck, the FBI asked the State police to not wear their body cameras that day, and the FBI requested State police not record the interviews of the agents.

Witness testimony, audio, and video evidence plus bullet trajectory analysis all confirmed that FBI agent W. Joseph Astarita lied about firing two shots at the truck driven by LaVoy Finicum after he drove into a snowbank. One shot pierced the roof of the truck hitting passenger Ryan Bundy and terrorizing the other passengers.

Mr. Finicum left the van – with his hands up – to draw the gunfire away from the van. Within seconds, the police say Mr. Finicum reached inside his jacket for a gun and was killed.

The government revealed the Oregon State Police SWAT troopers at the scene are ordinarily required to wear body cameras. They didn’t that day at the request of the FBI. The FBI did obtain video from FBI surveillance planes flying above the scene.

State police detectives normally record interviews of officers but didn’t that night when interviewing the FBI team. That was again at the FBI’s request. The FBI also asked them to interview the team as a group and not individually.

A follow-up interview with the hostage team members also came with unusual conditions, prosecutors note.

The shooting came as the FBI and state police moved to arrest the leaders of the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge as they drove to a meeting outside the refuge on Jan. 26, 2016.

The leaders had left the refuge before without incident and didn’t expect January 26th would be any different.

The cowboy occupiers thought it was simply a demonstration of civil disobedience. At the same time, Occupy Wall Street and other groups were in the news for taking over parks and buildings, damaging property, without incident.


By the time State police interviewed agents, they knew two shots were unaccounted for. The agents set conditions for the interview: They could only be interviewed as a group, the interview couldn’t be recorded and their lawyer could be present on a speakerphone.

The state police detectives found those conditions “particularly an unrecorded group interview – odd and problematic, but reluctantly agreed to them, believing that the alternative would be no interview at all,”  prosecutors wrote.


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Daniel Teeboom
5 years ago

I read Mother Jones comments when it happened. People were cheering.

Hillary Clinton
5 years ago

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Sovereign Mary
Sovereign Mary
5 years ago

The FBI acting as Murderous Assassins!

Sharon Hale
Sharon Hale
5 years ago

Even got Lavoy to reach inside his jacket. I’ve only seen this video once but it shows an agent first shooting Lavoy with a rubber bullet. The agent slithers back between the vehicles and gets his gun, now sees Lavoy reaching where he feels he is wounded. What they have failed to mention in all these articles is that Lavoy reached at his chest with “both” hands. One doesn’t usually reach for a gun with both hands. But the agent used this as the excuse that he was reaching for a weapon and fired. This is all very clear in the video I saw from overhead. The agent tried to be sneaky about the his first shot and then getting a “real” gun to do the killing but he can be seen and no mistake what he is doing. The FBI at it’s finest!! BTW heard today a former FBI agent say not to ever talk to the FBI.

Tommy 3step
5 years ago
Reply to  Sharon Hale

I saw that too , and all these guys wanted as their rights to graze back Lavoy had his water taken from him by environmental group filing sue and settle lawsuits to take his water same group that was in Burns at the refuge and probably had him killed Center for Biological Diversity they even stopped water on 1.5 million acres of farm GROUND IN California , WATCH VIDEO CALLED DEAD HARVEST

Kev Mccormick
5 years ago

The FBI set out that morning with 1 thing and only 1 thing in mind and planned out and that was to murder Lavoy in cold blood .They did it to him they have done it to others He’ll who knows we could be next.