Media missing real story with Hammonds in Burns, Oregon

Rep Katie Eyre Brewer

by Katie Eyre

The take-over of a federal building by an offshoot of Saturday’s peaceful rally in Burns, Oregon is taking over the real story.

The real story, best I can piece together: Two men were convicted of setting federal lands on fire. These lands were adjacent to their farm/ranch lands, and the fires appear to have been because the controlled burn on their land to control invasive species became out of control.

On a separate occasion, they set a defensive fire line as a forest fire was heading their way.

The judge sentenced them, they served their jail and prison time, and were released back to their families and land. However, the federal government appealed the sentencing. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals said that these two had to be sentenced to a minimum of 5 years AND be labeled terrorists.

So Monday, these two voluntarily were set to head BACK to prison.

When have any of us heard of a time when someone has served the sentence they were handed by a judge, been released, have no parole violations, but then get sent back to jail years later for additional time??

This reeks of unfairness. Injustice. Tyranny, maybe.

The rally Saturday of many people was to show peaceful support to the Hammond family, with their patriarch and brother returning to federal prison because a string of events that makes little intuitive sense.

The overtaking of the federal building, spurned by the Hammond family’s situation, is the act of a few, and unfortunately gives the media the opportunity to avoid asking the question: If someone has already served their sentence in jail/prison, is it equitable to send them back, years later, to serve more time?

Is this the kind of government we want?

Additional resources:

Hammonds’ appeal to SCOTUS

This arson crime section: 18 USC 844(f)(1), was added in the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1996, meant to enhance our ability to prosecute terrorism. See Sec. 708 of this 1996 law. Yes, the federal government prosecuted them as terrorists.

Katie Eyre is a Republican former Oregon state representative from Hillsboro

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to LinkedIn Post to Reddit

Posted by at 05:00 | Posted in Crime & Sentencing, Federal Government, Government Overreach, U.S. Supreme Court | 68 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • 3H

    Here is the government’s take on the issue. It looks like it might be a little more complicated than Ms. Eyre lets on. I noticed that she didn’t mention the poaching, the fact that the Judge may have been wrong in the sentencing phase, nor the fact that the fire the backfire that had been set was potentially dangerous to fire fighters.

    Link: U.S. Department of Justice

    • Nice00

      Exactly. And the 104th Congress was majority Republican in both the House and Senate. The anti-terrorism law the Hammonds were sentenced under was another one of those laws that few of our elected representatives read, or even understood. But hey, at least back then the President and the House and Senate were working together turning bills into laws!

    • Middling

      Is Ms Katie living proof that Republicans are nothing but liars? Or, does she only get her info from Breitbart and Fox.

    • MrBill

      There are things about the whole poaching thing that don’t make sense. Apart from the question of why someone would torch 130 acres to cover up poaching, the penalty for poaching is a stiff fine-not a five year prison sentence. Poaching doesn’t seem to be the issue here.

      From what I can gather, the Hammonds may be guilty of stupidity, but not terrorism (which is what they’re being sent away for).

      • 3H

        Well, according to eye witnesses, poaching was indeed the reason. They didn’t set out to burn 130 acres, that’s what happened when the fire got out of control.

        If you’re looking for logic in what people do, you’re going to be frequently disappointed.

        Of course, they weren’t convicted of poaching, they were convicted of arson: a felony with a 5 year mandatory minimum. And that was for two separate fires. Why is that too much time? Especially given the dangers that firefights have to face when putting out a fire?

        I’m frequently amused (and I’m not accusing you of this) by so many conservatives that were in favor of mandatory minimums who have now decided they don’t like them because of who they were applied against.

        • patriot156

          eye witnesses were biased or lying to begin with. the Boy who which it was found later to only be saying so because of some punishment his dad gave him. The few transcripts I have found that were from the original sentencing, it does note that it was found the boy’s testimony wasn’t all the credible.
          I’m partially conservative but don’t support mandatory minimums at all, except maybe very violent crimes. But No I don’t think or believe the Hammond’s were covering up poaching. to begin with fire to do so has to be hotter than it would, or did that day so covering up poaching no.

    • patriot156

      That’s a BS statement if I ever heard one. The poaching didn’t’ happen as the Govt has stated. Think about it. If your going to cover up poaching wouldn’t you do something different that start a fire? For it to cover up their poaching the fire would have had to had burn so hot as to burn up the flesh and bone but it never got that hot and only burnt a 100 acres or so. Actually helped the land in the long run, because it helped control some tree or scrub brush that hurts the water there.

      BS to the other backfire comment the Govt were the ones starting these fricking fires to begin with, and their mucking things up almost cost this family their barns and lively hoods.
      It was either let BLM started fires burn their buildings and animals or act. You people with your don’t act and let the Govt do it all are just a bunch of cowards and can’t think for yourselves.
      I tell ya this let the courts decide is what’s making this country a country of sheep who have no backbone to stand up to this corruption. Your making things worse with that crap, not better.
      Wolf in sheep’s clothing.

  • edietrimmer

    No mention of mandatory minimums. When it happens to ranchers it doesn’t seem like such a great idea. And no mention of a trial by jury convicting them of arson

  • JJ

    Poachers who tried covering the evidence by setting public land on fire is the real story not getting enough attention.

    • thevillageidiot

      nice bit of sarcasm. lets burn the “forest” to hide the killing of bambie.

  • Francis Pettygrove

    The notion that the Hammonds set a range fire to hide poaching is beyond ridiculous. Way easier and way less risky to bury the evidence

    • Middling

      The notion that the Hammonds set a range fire to hide poaching is beyond ridiculous.

      Uhhh, no one is calling the Hammonds intelligent or even smart.

      SE Oregon is about as far from anywhere as you can get in the US, why hide poaching? No one is around around to witness the poaching. Or, were the Hammonds killing animals to kill animals. I am actually hoping they were poaching to feed their family rather than shooting deer for eating his grass!

      But, then again, no one is claiming the Hammonds are/were intelligent.

    • Cindy F

      Exactly…carcasses do not burn easy….my ranch was burned this summer during a horrific forest fire, and there are still skeletal remains of cattle that have died years past

      • 3H

        But it can hide how they died, yes?

  • thevillageidiot

    Did any one read the ”
    Hammonds’ appeal to SCOTUS” ? no where in the document is there any mention of poaching. It did mention a day of successful hunting on private lands. I do not know the hunting season was that year for that area but it does appear to be a legitimate hunting season. So where do you I(*)&&*)ts get the notion of poaching? perhaps you should do some research before mouthing off. The news media talks about the Bundy’s and makes very little mention of Hammond’s. typical mainstream media. stir up emotional responses with very little fact. look at the words first the headline “Armed Activist” stirs up emotions of terrorism. only one mention of the Hammond’s, some articles directly some not. there is a link but how many will go there? another link “FBI takes helm of effort to end militia occupation.” Three to five buildings? how many can they not count?

    the first judgment by the district court was probably fair. The Federal government had to step in and enforce the terrorism which the burns were not. unintended consequences of stupid laws. and BTW just as many Democrats voted for the “terrorism” as Republicans. Now to be fair it was the state of Oregon that gave state controlled public lands to the BLM. Kind of like the purchase of Manhattan for a few trade trinkets. the state got a few trinkets. so the Bundy’s are going after the wrong people but it is a case of once it become federal it will never return to private or state. Yes the acts of the federal government against the Hammond’s borders on tyranny. The Hammond’s are not terrorists. The Bundy’s should not be where the are and the news media is trying to make a sensationalized story to show the gullible public they are doing a great service. It is pretty obvious there are a lot of gullible Oregonians falling for the stupid news story. if the FBI were to go home, the BLM and Forest service just leave the facility closed for the winter and the news media just shuts up what would happen to the protest? In Nevada they owe the money. A contract was entered by both parties. Do not know what litigation if any the government and the Nevada Brundy’s had and what was the outcome. The news media did not dwell on that fact. Do not let facts get in the way of a news story. Our government has become tyrannical (Hammond sentencing) and the mainstream news media is its propaganda machine, regardles of who is in office or which party is in power.

    • Middling

      Village Idiot (what an appropriate name). The reason the appeal did not include poaching was because THE HAMMONDS WERE NOT CONVICTED OF POACHING! In simple terms, you can;t appeal what you have not been convicted!

      The rest of your comments are just gibberish. Take a chill pill and come back.

    • 3H

      5 years for arson is tyranny? What a funny world you live in. As for propaganda, please refrain from living in a glass house while throwing rocks.

      • redbean

        I read your link. It left out the part about Judge Hogan questioning the validity of the key witness to the poaching claim – an estranged relative with a personal vendetta, who was a minor at the time of the fire (age 13), yet didn’t testify until 11 years later at age 24. Guess the jury wasn’t swayed either.

        • Middling

          Did they get convicted of poaching-NO.

          • redbean

            That’s my point, although some posters including you seem to think they are guilty of it, though not convicted.

            Middling said:
            “Setting fires on own land. Actually, they committed arson while
            covering up illegal deer hunting (otherwise known as poaching). While
            the court did not find the defendents guilty of poaching, they were
            convicted of felony arson, which carries a minimum sentence of 5 years.”

          • Middling

            So, now you are a mind reader. Unfortunately, you are a very bad mind reader. I did not say the Hammonds were guilty of arson (And, If I did, it is only an opinion. )
            So, we can argue/discuss the guilt or innocence of the Hammonds, but the only opinion in a court of law is the jury.

            The Hammonds were convicted in a court of law. The Hammonds also appealed all the way to the Supreme Court (who declined to review)

          • Juanito Ibañez, TopCop1988

            “The Hammonds also appealed all the way to the Supreme Court (who declined to review)”

            However, the Hammonds have the right to file another Petition for Writ of Certiorari based on the later SCOTUS decision in Alleyne v. United States, 11-9335, dated 17 June of 2015 – rendered months after their original Petition was denied.

        • 3H

          They were swayed enough to convict the Hammonds of arson. On two separate occasions.

          Children are rarely believed.. and in fact, the Hammonds did admit to what, anywhere else in the civilized world, would be considered child abuse.

    • redbean

      The Hammonds have described a history with the BLM and US Fish and Wildlife going back to the 1990s, but similar issues have been brewing since the 1970s due to contradictory land use policies. There are at least two sides to every story and the Hammonds’ side – as well as that of other ranchers – just isn’t sexy enough for the media.

      Putting ranchers out of business through control of grazing permits, increased fees and regulations as well as blocking access to private land and water makes the ranches available to buyers at bargain basement prices. And guess who’s buying?

      • Middling

        How many ranchers are leasing land from the Feds? While most ranchers would love to have no rules or laws concerning their use of public lands, why is it only two ranchers have decided to take it into their own hands- the Bundys and the Hammonds. Why has the rest of Burns turned their back on the Bundys?

        Does this represent 1% of ranchers, 10% of ranchers, 66% of ranchers. I have seen other commentators mentioning that their family has been paying the range fees for years because they knew they were getting a good deal.

        • 3H

          And why do some ranchers feel they have a right to use public resources.. and pretty damn cheaply at that?

          • redbean

            Because the government made promises and then changed the rules on them, around 1976. The Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) required multiple uses: ranching/grazing, mining and preservation, setting the stage for conflict.

            Previous to this: “John Scharff, the refuge manager from 1935 to 1971, worked closely with ranchers to establish grazing leases that funded the restoration of former wetlands and won public support for the effort.”

            http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/06/opinion/in-oregon-myth-mixes-with-anger.html?&_r=0

          • Eric Blair

            I see, did the government have a contract that granted rights to grazing at a set rate in perpetuity? What if the old program wasn’t working and needed to be changed? That still really doesn’t answer WHY the government was required to continue subsidizing grazing for ranchers. Which they still do. Is there an actual right to expect the government to do that? I’d be interested in hearing a conservative claim that there is.

            Talk about crony capitalism.

          • redbean

            No, the government isn’t “required” to continue with grazing permits. As the Native Americans found out, the USG never grants rights in perpetuity. However, the BLM gives their reasoning for continuing the grazing program:

            “Livestock grazing can result in impacts on public land resources, but well-managed grazing provides numerous environmental benefits as well. For example, while livestock grazing can lead to increases in some invasive species, well-managed grazing can be used to manage vegetation. Intensively managed “targeted” grazing can control some invasive plant species or reduce the fuels that contribute to severe wildfires. Besides providing such traditional products as meat and fiber, well-managed rangelands and other private ranch lands support healthy watersheds, carbon sequestration, recreational opportunities, and wildlife habitat. Livestock grazing on public lands helps maintain the private ranches that, in turn, preserve the open spaces that have helped write the West’s history and will continue to shape this region’s character in the years to come.”

            http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/grazing.html

          • redbean

            Yes, programs and agreements can change as times change, but due process matters. In Rep. Walden’s speech before an empty House chamber last week, he described the history of the Steens Mountain Cooperative Management and Protection Act, which represented “a new era in cooperation.” He also described his frustration over its reinterpretation by bureaucrats. It’s worth a read/listen.

            http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2016/01/post_227.html

            As Rep. Walden points out, “The people there love the land. It was the ranchers who came up with the concept of the cooperative management. It was the ranchers who loved Steens Mountain that know that for them to survive they have to take care of the range.”

            Private owners have incentives to maintain the health of their land so they can continue to derive value from it. Public ownership creates incompatible mandates and cronyism.

          • redbean

            When the federal government is the largest landholder in a region, there aren’t many alternatives. If ranchers were in the same cozy club as TBTF bankers and military contractors, they wouldn’t be victimized by prosecutorial abuse or feel the need to engage in civil disobedience in the middle of nowhere in the dead of winter.

            Crony capitalism can’t exist without government: “When the federal government established the national parks system, and locked up millions of acres, it made other land — held especially by the timber and railroad interests associated with J.P. Morgan, Roosevelt’s mentor — much more valuable. Some of these interests were the funders of the original conservation lobbying organization. https://www.lewrockwell.com/2000/05/lew-rockwell/the-enviro-skeptics-manifesto/

          • YaddaYadda

            Well, from my understanding is that the contracts are for several years at a stretch. And if these pinheads want the land transferred into private hands, they need to get their asses in line because as far as I’m concerned, we need to give it back to the Native Americans that it was stolen from.

    • mjcrites

      From the Supreme Court:
      “The September 2001 fire. On September 30, 2001, petitioners led an unauthorized hunting expedi- tion on federal land and illegally shot several deer. C.A. E.R. 77, 82, 87-89, 92-96, 239-240. A BLM dis- trict manager, who was lawfully hunting in the same area, ran into and spoke with Dwight at about 8 a.m.; witnessed the shooting of several deer about 30 to 45 minutes later; and then briefly saw Steven at the scene before Steven ducked into the brush to hide.”

      Of course the Hammobd’s aren’t going to put in their own brief that they were poaching.

  • Middling

    Why is only selected information presented? OH, Ms Katie is a Republican, who either can’t read or gets her news from Breitbart and/or Fox.

    Setting fires on own land. Actually, they committed arson while covering up illegal deer hunting (otherwise known as poaching). While the court did not find the defendents guilty of poaching, they were convicted of felony arson, which carries a minimum sentence of 5 years.

    There you go Ms Katie. Like a typical Republican- you are just spewing LIES! Thank god, you know longer represent Oregon!

  • Don

    Katie could have spent a bit more time researching… but then again, maybe she did…

    http://www.justice.gov/usao-or/pr/eastern-oregon-ranchers-convicted-arson-resentenced-five-years-prison

    • Juanito Ibañez, TopCop1988

      Hmmm: seems as though the “Ninth Circus” and the USDoJ just might get their collective butts kicked if the ‘Hammond v. U.S.’ RE-appeal get to the SCOTUS:

      Alleyne v. United States, 11-9335

      On June 17, the U.S. Supreme Court shook up mandatory minimum sentencing, extending the protection of the Sixth Amendment’s right to trial by jury to all defendants facing enhanced mandatory minimum sentences. In Alleyne v. United States, a 5-4 majority held that any fact that triggers any mandatory minimum sentence is an “element” of the crime and must be proven to a jury by proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Before Alleyne, a judge who found that certain facts had been established by the lower “preponderance of the evidence” standard was required to impose any mandatory sentence triggered by those facts. The decision, which reverses the Court’s 2002 ruling in Harris v. United States, is a straightforward but hard-fought extension of the so-called Apprendi rule. The Apprendi case commands that any fact that increases the range of punishment to which a defendant is exposed is an “element” of the crime and must be presented to the jury and proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

      http://famm.org/projects/federal/u-s-supreme-court/alleyne-v-united-states/

      Supreme Court’s mandatory minimum ruling viewed as ‘game-changer’
      http://www.post-gazette.com/business/legal/2015/06/30/Supreme-Court-s-mandatory-minimum-ruling-viewed-as-game-changer/stories/201506230007

      Justice Scalia Just Took An Important Swing At Mandatory Minimums
      http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2015/06/26/3674383/johnson-ruling-mandatory-minimums/

      • thevillageidiot

        a rational mind.

      • HBguy

        Alleyne v US isn’t even close to applying here.
        There are no constitutional problems with the federal law requiring a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years for arson.
        A conservative Supreme Court has assured that Legislatures can pass constitutionally valid mandatory minimums that remove sentencing discretion from the Judge.

        • Juanito Ibañez, TopCop1988

          You need to read the trial court judge’s comments on the US Attorney’s seeking this to be a “terrorism” case – it was his basis for rejecting the “five-year minimum” punishment.

          Ergo: ‘Alleyne’ is “on point.”

          Moreover; the US Attorney violated his own Plea Bargain in the original case – wherein there were to be no appeals of the judgment in the case.

          HOWEVER; the above notwithstanding, it is ultimately in the hands of the Hammonds and their attorney as to whether or not another Petition for Writ of Certiorari is forthcoming – based on ‘Alleyne’ – as the ‘Alleyne’ decision (June 2015) was post the Denial of their original petition (March 2015).

          • MrBill

            This sheds a lot of light. From what I could gather, the Hammonds just don’t seem like the terrorist types and there was a side of the story that wasn’t getting told.

          • Juanito Ibañez, TopCop1988

            Here’s another, more detailed, view of the Hammonds situation – and it seems to provide an explanation as to why the Hammonds surrendered so quietly and why they told the Bundys to “back off”:

            ‘What Happened In The Hammond Sentencing In Oregon? A Lawsplaine’
            https://popehat.com/2016/01/04/what-happened-in-the-hammond-sentencing-in-oregon-a-lawsplainer/

  • JJ

    “The jury convicted both of the Hammonds of using fire to destroy federal property for a 2001 arson known as the Hardie-Hammond Fire, located in the Steens Mountain Cooperative Management and Protection Area. Witnesses at trial, including a relative of the Hammonds, testified the arson occurred shortly after Steven Hammond and his hunting party illegally slaughtered several deer on BLM property. Jurors were told that Steven Hammond handed out “Strike Anywhere” matches with instructions that they be lit and dropped on the ground because they were going to “light up the whole country on fire.” One witness testified that he barely escaped the eight to ten foot high flames caused by the arson. The fire consumed 139 acres of public land and destroyed all evidence of the game violations. ”
    http://www.justice.gov/usao-or/pr/eastern-oregon-ranchers-convicted-arson-resentenced-five-years-prison

    • redbean

      That witness was a 13-year-old minor at the time of the fire, and testified 11 years later. Judge Hogan allowed the testimony but questioned the credibility of the witness’ memory. There are additional problems with this witness related to family issues but I don’t know if the jury was given that information.

      • 3H

        Actually, I believe they were. You must be referring to the initials the young man carved into his sides, and then was forced to have sanded off by one of the adult Hammonds?

        I’m sure the jury took that into account. Is it really that difficult to believe that the Hammonds felt that they could do what they wanted, and the law didn’t really apply to them?

        • redbean

          Yes, I was referring to the multiple issues raised in the police report of that incident. Although we don’t know why the family had temporary custody of their grandson/nephew, we know they sought professional help for him from the county mental health agency. He was put on an anti-depressant (common at that time, now known to be very risky with teens), had been charged as a minor in possession of alcohol and tobacco, and was engaging in self-mutilation, which shows that the professional help had been insufficient. The police report notes it is unknown whether the teen continued with the sanding after the adult initiated it. I think Steve Hammond had to attend anger management and do community service.

          My concern was whether the jury knew of this history, but in the petition for the writ of certiorari, it sounds like the jury discounted both the relative’s testimony and that of another witness that contradicted him, with the judge appropriately questioning the certainty of his memory.

          I don’t see evidence that “the Hammonds felt that they could do what they wanted, and the law didn’t really apply to them.” This story has many twists and turns.

      • YaddaYadda

        There was more than one witness. One of them was a nephew. The others had nothing to do with the Hammond family.

      • patriot156

        It was also stated in the transcripts that his testimony was incredible at the the time.

    • patriot156

      A BS story to sell the BS govt.

  • Jonathan

    I remember that guy in Eugene — Jeff “Free” Luers was his name? — who served years in jail for setting fire to some cars on a dealer lot. Nobody hurt, just some property damage. It was called arson then, and terrorism. I don’t remember too many Oregon Catalyst types — or too many other people to the right of the local anarchists — worrying about inordinately harsh treatment for him. He served his time and I’m told — no way for me to verify — that he regrets his foolishness. I hope these ranchers learn their lesson too, if the details of the case are what some sources maintain. If it really is oppression by the feds, maybe the jailed ranchers have a case. My ears are open. I probably wouldn’t give them 5 years. Nor would I have probably given “Free” the number of years he got. The wacks at the Malheur certainly aren’t helping the ranchers. They are giving Oregon a lot of publicity.

    • redbean

      As long as we continue to say to each other, “Well, you didn’t complain until it happened to your side,” justice will not prevail for anyone. Divide and conquer still works.

      • Jonathan

        See my post up above about the death threats reported from these guys in the Oregonian.

        If the right wants sympathy for these guys now — getting harder and harder for me — it would be good form to acknowledge their past indifference when lefties were on the receiving end.

  • redbean

    This family has been an integral part of their community. http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2015/12/ranchers_fight_with_feds_spark.html

    “Hammond has reached for his wallet a lot in this country. He and his ranch family have supported virtually every charitable activity there is around Harney County. They buy youngsters’ animals at 4H sales. They host barbecues. They support the local senior center…Over the years, Hammond built a side business trucking livestock while his youngest son, Steve, helped run the ranch…Together, they and their wives became civic anchors, according to letters later submitted to federal court. They served on school boards and nonprofit boards. They were active in industry groups, with Steve Hammond once serving as president of the Harney County Farm Bureau.”

  • redbean

    Steve Hammond admitted to setting the 2001 fire as a prescribed burn, for which the federal government did not take any action at the time, as well as the 2006 fire, a successful backfire to counter lightening-caused fire that threatened their house and winter range. The day after the 2006 fire, Steve Hammond was arrested, but the county DA reviewed the accusation and evidence, then dropped the charges. FIVE YEARS LATER (yes, I’m shouting!) they were charged under the terrorism law by a novice (at that time), and now disgraced, US Attorney, Amanda Marshall.

    http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2012/01/oregons_top_federal_prosecutor.html

    http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2015/04/oregon_us_attorney_amanda_mars.html#incart_story_package

    If that timeline is interesting, the settlement is even more concerning. In addition to jail time served, the Hammonds paid $400,000 related to fire-fighting costs. The clincher: As part of the settlement, they were required to give BLM first right of refusal if they intend to sell. Think they’ll be able to stay in business now?

    • DoILookAmused2u ?

      If they stopped setting fires on land that is not theirs and had managed their 12,000 acres they would have been fine.

      They would be raising a cull of about 5000-6000 head instead of the 200-300 they have now after selling off all their stock to paying for 5 years of legal battles.

      That’s 4-6 million a year gross they gave up to be idiots.

      • redbean

        Excerpts from Tri-State Livestock News:
        http://www.tsln.com/news/18837869-113/where-theres-smoke

        “The first fire, in 2001, was a planned burn on Hammonds’ own property to reduce juniper trees that have become invasive in that part of the country. That fire burned outside the Hammonds’ private property line and took in 138 acres of unfenced BLM land before the Hammonds got it put out. No BLM firefighters were needed to help extinguish the fire and no fences were damaged.”

        “In cross-examination of a prosecution witness, the court transcript also includes an admission from Mr. Ward, a range conservationist, that the 2001 fire improved the rangeland conditions on the BLM property.”

        “Susan (Dwight Hammond’s wife) said the second fire, in 2006, was a backfire started by Steven to protect their property from lightning fires. ‘There was fire all around them that was going to burn our house and all of our trees and everything. The opportunity to set a back-fire was there and it was very successful. It saved a bunch of land from burning,’ she remembers.”

        “The BLM asserts that one acre of federal land was burned by the Hammonds’ backfire and Susan says determining which fire burned which land is “a joke” because fire burned from every direction. Neighbor Ruthie Danielson also remembers that evening and agrees. ‘Lightning strikes were everywhere, fires were going off,’ she said.”

        • DoILookAmused2u ?

          lies

        • MrBill

          Nice bit of research.

  • 只需10元钱,4万G资源一键转存到你的360网盘

    囊括:

    网赚项目、名师讲座、设计素材、致富技术

    网络教程、文档资料、公开课,小说下载等等

    http://www.cao.eeequn.com/

    乙未年(羊)冬月廿六 2016-1-5

  • mjcrites

    Actually it was clear cut cases of arson. The first one to cover up poaching of deer and the Hammond’s took a plea deal, where they knew they were getting five years, in order to avoid being found guilty on more charges,

    As for the Bundy Burgade, it’s 4 days on and they still can’t clearly articulate what they want.

  • Eric Blair

    Perhaps we should go back a little further, and return the land to the peoples that were there before ranchers: These aren’t the first armed whites to take over that Oregon land…

    • ‘Siting’ Bull Horn

      Yoga Blair, speaking for ‘caption’ Jack still rocking out in Calamity counties ORCA history .

  • Jonathan

    Read the story in the Oregonian today about death threats from these guys against federal employees over the years. They sound less and less like innocent victims.

  • Perry

    Thank you Katie for telling the truth hats off to you!!!!!

  • Burns

    There was No poaching besides a grass fire would not hide evidence from a dead animal

  • Brandon Alleman

    Mandatory minimums are problematic. This is hardly the only use of them for sentencing or example of people being over incarcerated in the US. The original judge, unfortunately, didn’t have the authority to override it in the first place. Mandatory minimum sentences in general and arson of federal property treated as terrorism are bad policy. Let’s make some changes in Congress then!

  • TJ2000

    I’m still looking for that “evidence” that shows burnt deer carcasses – And until I find it I’m calling a big BS on the poaching charge. I’ve never known a small brush fire to melt bones. Has anyone else?

  • patriot156

    How much more usurpation, corruption and keep your head in the sand claiming political means, voting peaceful protests are what’s going to win before people realize that ain’t so?

Stay Tuned...

Stay up to date with the latest political news and commentary from Oregon Catalyst through daily email updates:

Prefer another subscription option? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, become a fan on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Twitter Facebook

No Thanks (close this box)