FBI agents under investigation in LaVoy Finicum shooting

LaVoy Finicum, a rancher from Arizona, who is part of the group occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge speaks with reporters during a news conference at the the refuge. Law enforcement had yet to take any action against the group numbering close to two dozen who are upset over federal land policy. Finicum said the group would examine the underlying land ownership transactions to begin to "unwind it," stating he was eager to leave Oregon, near Burns, Oregon, Jan. 5, 2016| AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Several FBI agents are under investigation after one allegedly lied about firing twice at Robert LaVoy Finicum and others helped cover up the incident after the fact, authorities said Tuesday during a press conference in Oregon.

While the bullets didn’t hit Finicum, all five unnamed agents, part of an elite national unit, are still under criminal investigation by the U.S. Justice Department. Inspector General Michael Horowitz is leading the independent inquiry.

The disclosure came as a team of local investigators released findings that two state troopers who shot Finicium three times in the back at the scene Jan. 26 are now cleared of any wrongdoing. An autopsy showed, one bullet pierced Finicum’s heart.

Prosecutors ruled Finicum’s fatal shooting was legally justified because Finicum kept moving his hands toward his pocket that officers later found contained a loaded handgun. Oregon state law allows use of deadly force when officers believe a person is about to seriously injure or kill someone, authorities said.

The Harney County district attorney asked Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office to handle the investigation of Finicum’s death. Deschutes County Sheriff Shane Nelson and Malheur County District Attorney Dan Norris held a press conference Tuesday to release the findings.

This is a preliminary story and will be updated later today as Finicum’s wife, Jeanette, is scheduled to hold a press conference this afternoon to comment on the investigation findings and Oregon press conference. More information will be available at St. George News after that time.

St. George News Reporter Tracie Sullivan contributed to this report.

Email: kscott@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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27 Comments

  • RealMcCoy March 8, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    Good! It’s about time those criminal FBI agents are held accountable.
    Lying about the shooting and then covering it up just shows that they knew they were in the wrong.
    Those domestic FBI terrorists should be hanged.

    • .... March 9, 2016 at 8:51 am

      Idiot !

    • theone March 9, 2016 at 9:48 am

      Either you didn’t read the article, or your comprehension is compromised.

  • ladybugavenger March 8, 2016 at 1:57 pm

    Why you gotta lie FBI? In that video that he becomes unstable and “reaches for his pockets” it appears a gun shot had been fired before the deadly shot causing him to become unstable. The video did not have audio but I see what I see.

    • RealMcCoy March 8, 2016 at 3:08 pm

      I think if a man is being shot at from all sides, it’s understandable that he would fear for his life and want to defend himself.
      That being said, no gun has ever been proven to be found on LaVoy. The facts tend to prove that he was unarmed (a right handed man does not carry a pistol inside a left pocket) , and now the ‘smoking gun’- if you’ll pardon the pun- is that the FBI has lied from day 1.
      I hope the FBI liars are burned at the stake as an example to all that would shoot an innocent man in the back.

      • Law24 March 8, 2016 at 9:58 pm

        A right handed man will carry a pistol in his left pocket – especially if that pocket is on the inside of the jacket – to be able to draw the gun in cross-draw fashion. There are also several cross-holsters that are manufactured and sold. Do some research before making such an asinine comment. LaVoy was not an innocent man. He dug his grave when he stated in his “tarp man” interview that he would rather die then sit in a jail cell; also when he reached for that loaded, concealed handgun several times after exiting the truck.

        • RealMcCoy March 9, 2016 at 1:28 pm

          You cannot ‘cross draw’ from inside a left side pocket that faces out to the left. They ‘claim’ he had a loaded pistol inside his outside jacket pocket. It has not been proven that he was armed, and it does not make sense to stick a pistol in that pocket if you are right handed. He was not wearing a holster; they ‘claim’ it was inside his outside jacket pocket.
          Do some research before making such an asinine comment.
          As for your statement that LaVoy was not an innocent man- in America, EVERYONE is ‘innocent until proven guilty in a court of law’. – Don’t forget that part. It’s what makes America great.

      • Real Life March 9, 2016 at 6:34 am

        “Innocent man”. Put the kool aid down. When you stage an armed takeover of a federal institution, run from deputies, and reach for a gun when caught, bad things happen. You need to get a life.

      • .... March 9, 2016 at 8:52 am

        Tell us all about it RealMcStupid !

  • KarenS March 8, 2016 at 2:43 pm

    The headline should have read “LaVoy Finicum shooting justified, shot 3 times by Oregon State Police”. The fact that that one FBI agent did not report that he had fired one shot that hit the truck and is now under investigation for not reporting it has nothing to do with the facts of the justified shooting. I would encourage everyone to watch and listen to Shawna Cox’s video that she took with her cellphone which was used extensively at the press conference in Bend, Oregon. You can listen to the Oregon State Police identifying themselves, giving legal commands to the occupants, LaVoy’s responses, the discussion about making a run for it (Shawna suggests getting down while Lavoy guns it), hitting the snow bank, and the sounds of all 8 shots (including the three that hit Finicum). Excellent work, Mrs. Cox, not even close to what you claimed later.

    • ladybugavenger March 8, 2016 at 9:35 pm

      Well, the FBI agent lying about the shot fired is an embarrassment to the agency. I’m sure it will be justified as soon as there is a complete and thorough investigation (wink wink that’s how it works here in the good ole US of A)

  • Rainbow Dash March 8, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    I don’t care how many shots were fired by who, justice was done.

    • Rainbow Dash March 8, 2016 at 3:14 pm

      That said, if the agents lied they need to face the consequences of their actions.

      • mesaman March 9, 2016 at 7:25 am

        And the vultures of PC and socialism screamed as they fought over the flesh of innocent victims. You serve your purpose loudly, not necessarily with dignity, rainbow child.

        • .... March 9, 2016 at 8:53 am

          Which is a lot more than I can say for you

    • RealMcCoy March 9, 2016 at 1:31 pm

      Justice? When was the trial?
      If people disagreed with your stance on issues, and you were later shot in the back because someone disagreed with you, would we also be able to say justice was done?
      I used to have respect for your opinions, but this recent tirade of yours that is based on opinions and not facts has erased that respect.

      • Rainbow Dash March 9, 2016 at 10:46 pm

        First, it makes no difference to me if you respect my opinions or not.
        Secondly, Finicum wasn’t shot because the police disagreed with him, he was shot because he knew who they were and STILL jumped out of thre truck, yelled ‘You’ll have to shoot me” a few times then reached for a gun. Think about it, if it was true that the police killed him simply because they disagreed with him, as your statement implies, why is EVERYONE ELSE who was in the truck still alive?

        • RealMcCoy March 10, 2016 at 10:20 am

          So where is your bleeding-heart tirade shouting “hands up, don’t shoot’? Do people get to riot and burn now?

          • Rainbow Dash March 10, 2016 at 3:30 pm

            I don’t support the “Hands up, Don’t shoot” nonsense either. You’d know that if you had the ability to read and comprehend any of my previous comments on that though.

          • RealMcCoy March 11, 2016 at 11:23 am

            No you just don’t support anyone with a view that opposes yours.
            You also seem to be allergic to facts. Those darn pesky facts that if you bothered to look up, would contradict the little bits of the story you hold to be absolute truths.

          • Rainbow Dash March 11, 2016 at 2:42 pm

            Of course I don’t support anyone with a view that opposes mine. Why would I do that? Why don’t you present some of those things you think are “facts” to me? Post them right here. I going to take a wild stab here though and say that in all probability those “facts” that you present will be from some right wing extremist’s WordPress page. Or the Bundy Ranch. Or some other opinion blog in which the writer cites a right wing extremist WordPress page or The Bundy Ranch as a “reputable” source.

      • .... March 10, 2016 at 3:33 am

        I’ve never had any respect for anything you ever posted

  • voice of reason March 8, 2016 at 3:58 pm

    Tracie, you should be embarrassed by this article. You chose to focus on one small part of the whole story just to get an inflammatory headline. Your overwhelming bias and crush on the Bundy clan is showing.

  • Accountable March 8, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Cowards, liars, murderers.

    • Rainbow Dash March 8, 2016 at 10:07 pm

      Yep. The people in the truck are cowards, liars and [terrorists] Accountable. The video Ive linked below was shot in LaVoy’s truck by Shawna Cox. It clearly shows that LaVoy and his group of inbred terrorists had no intention of giving up and going quietly. As you’ll see in the video, LaVoy REPEATEDLY stated that they would have to shoot him, even after he got out of the car and AFTER the police identified themselves.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cFsHOu_Cjmk

  • 42214 March 8, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    Who cares who got to shoot him. He deserved it. Give the family a donkey and $200 for reparations.

    • .... March 9, 2016 at 8:56 am

      Heck yeah 422. .. sounds like a deal to me ! maybe throw in a couple of chunks of government cheese

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