Probation sentence expected for Oregon refuge occupier Geoffrey Stanek

Geoffrey Stanek, who pleaded guilty to federal conspiracy last year in the takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, should not face a sentence longer than the one-year probation given to three co-defendants who were allowed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor, his lawyer argues.

Stanek, 27, wasn’t at the refuge takeover from the start and didn’t stay until the end, like co-defendants Sean and Sandra Anderson who were among the last holdouts before their Feb. 11, 2016 surrender. The Anderson couple and co-defendant Dylan Anderson avoided a trial by pleading guilty to the misdemeanor charge of trespass this winter and were sentenced to one year of probation.

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Feds announce racketeering charges against 23 motorcycle gang members

Federal prosecutors said they smashed the structure of one of the country’s most ruthless criminal organizations with a racketeering indictment against 23 members of the Vagos Outlaw Motorcycle Gang, who were arrested Friday in Nevada, Hawaii and California.

The 12-count indictment, unsealed in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas, accuses the bikers of a laundry list of violent crimes committed over the past 12 years. It includes the 2011 murder of a rival Hells Angel gang member at the Sparks Nugget Hotel &Casino — a crime described Friday as part of a broader criminal conspiracy that involved a coordinated cover-up and threats of retaliation against gang members who cooperated with law enforcement.

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Michele Fiore – She Matters Because of How She Stands

I don’t think that you can find a better example of how It Matters How You Stand than newly elected City Council Woman Michele Fiore. Her conservative values, respect, and support for the United States Constitution as it defines the structure and government roles of our Constitutional Republic, are hard to find in City, County, State or Federal Politics anywhere today.

Tuesday 6-14-2017, Michelle, secured her position as City Council Women for Ward 6, Las Vegas, Nevada.  Her victory was not easy, as the last minute smear campaign, reduced her early voting 8 points lead to an only 1 point victory.  The win on election night was estimated to as close as 150-200 actual votes.

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Judge skeptical refuge occupier Jason Patrick would follow release conditions if let out of jail

U.S. District Judge Anna J. Brown said she was struggling to find “clear and convincing” evidence that Oregon refuge occupier Jason Patrick would follow court-imposed conditions if released from custody before sentencing.

Though prosecutors’ did not object to Patrick’s motion for release Friday, Brown said she was troubled by his past record: Patrick’s “insolent and disrespectful” behavior in court during trial, the three times he was late and then spoke back to the judge at trial, his difficulty gaining entry to the courthouse because of his lack of any personal photo ID, his prior pronouncement that he would rather sit in jail than wear a electronic anklet for GPS monitoring, and his underlying federal conspiracy conviction.

“This is a man who does not respect the authority of the United States courts or federal law generally,” Brown said. “This is a man who chooses which rules he wants to follow.”

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How Insurance Companies Can Force Bad Cops Off the Job

Although an outside company exerting influence on local police may not seem compatible with good governance, there are hidden advantages to insurers’ monitoring police departments and suggesting improvements. For one, insurance companies are apolitical. “I think the debates about policing have become so fraught and so inflammatory,” Rappaport told me. “To have this big, well-heeled institution saying, ‘We’re not interested in that debate, we just want to get those numbers down’—it can make reform more palatable because it takes the electricity out.”

Cash-strapped cities, meanwhile, can benefit from the services offered by liability insurers, from police training sessions and applicant screening to data-driven insights gleaned from the insurer’s work with other municipalities. In Irwindale, there were biweekly meetings with an outside risk manager; hundreds of hours of training sessions for police officers on topics like sexual harassment and use of force; and outside reviews of all internal-affairs investigations. The department had 18 months to clean up its act in order to keep its coverage. “I’ve never seen such a thing in my whole career,” Miranda said. “I’m going on 27 years.”

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Gary Hunt : The Cause – What To Do?

When was the last time that the common Cause uttered Cliven Bundy, Dwight Hammond, Steven Hammond, Pubic Land policy?  What happened to the other defendants in Nevada and those convicted in Oregon?  What happened to the focus that brought thousands together in their respective support to the Cause?  Have these all been abandoned?

Some of those who have been staunch supporters of the elements of the Cause objected to what happened on Memorial Day weekend.  They are accused of creating division.  There are near relentless attacks on those who have steadfastly supported the original Cause, many from as early as April 2014.  Though until that weekend, had uttered no objection to those who chose to add the prisoner abuse issue to the agenda.

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US Interior inbox filling with emails about Nevada monument

LAS VEGAS (AP) – A debate is raging in the inbox of the U.S. Secretary of the Interior about whether President Donald Trump should keep the scenic, ecologically fragile and artifact-rich Gold Butte area in southern Nevada as a national monument.

Comments ranging from “I hope this area will remain protected” to “shut down this monument designation” have been posted in recent weeks about the future of the rugged and arid rangeland covering about 470 square miles (1,217 square kilometers) northeast of Las Vegas.

Many messages are unsigned. Some only mention Gold Butte among the 27 national monuments under Trump administration review, including the vast Basin and Range region covering 1,100 square miles (2,849 square kilometers) of central Nevada. About half of the 109,000 public comments as of Friday referred to Bears Ears monument in Utah.

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Oregon refuge occupier Jason Patrick wants out of jail, pending sentencing

Oregon refuge occupier Jason Patrick, who offered to be taken into custody just over two months ago after he was convicted of felony and misdemeanor charges, is asking to be released, pending his sentencing this fall.

“I think he’s just tired of being at the local jail,” his defense lawyer Andrew Kohlmetz said Friday. 

Patrick, 45, this time will abide by the conditions set for release, including electronic monitoring and home detention at his mother’s residence in Washington state, his lawyer said.

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Detained Without A Trial: Sen. Rand Paul’s new legislation will combat unconstitutional indefinite detention

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.

 -The Sixth Amendment

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American Standoff: Aftermath – delves deeper into the personal lives of the characters and key issues

American Standoff the documentary was aired on the audience channel (only available on Direct TV) in early May 2017. We published an article ‘American Standoff’ director on Oregon occupation: ‘We weren’t trying to take a side’ earlier about that Documentary. American Standoff: Aftermath is a follow-up short form series being published on YouTube. We will add each episode to this post as new episodes become available.

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Zinke taps Utahn for new post at US Fish & Wildlife Services

SALT LAKE CITY — The man credited with shepherding Utah’s wildlife agency for nearly five years — building the state’s reputation as one of the best wildlife managers in the West — was tapped Monday by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to help lead the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Greg Sheehan will become the national agency’s first deputy director in a newly created position and will serve as its acting director until a permanent director is named by President Donald Trump and confirmed by the Senate.

“I am thrilled to have an opportunity to work with Secretary Zinke and the great team at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service,” Sheehan said. “I look forward to helping promote the fish and wildlife resources in America through collaborative partnerships with states, local government, the sportsmen’s community and others.”

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The War on Private Property – Corridors to Connectivity (Part 4 of 6)

This is the fourth of a six-part series. The reader is strongly urged to visit these websites and study what is discussed in these articles in order to make an informed decision.

Part one covered data collection in the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy (CWCS) which was used to create the State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP) for species and habitat protection. In part two ecosystems and its components were covered and corridors were explained in part three. Now it is time to put all of it together with connectivity, the true agenda.

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Corridors and Connectivity (Part 3 of 6)

This is the third of a six-part series. The reader is strongly urged to visit these websites and study what is discussed in these articles in order to make an informed decision.

Part one covered data collection in the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy (CWCS) which was used to create the State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP) for species and habitat protection. In part two ecosystems and its components were covered These topics create the foundation for corridors and connectivity.

My family’s connection to Island Park began with my paternal grandfather who was an engineer for Union Pacific. His route traveled from Pocatello, through Big Springs, and on into Montana. When old enough, my father joined him on these trips and was dropped off at Big Springs, where he spent his time fishing until his father picked him up on the way back. As he grew into a man he spent more time in Island Park camping, fishing, and hunting with my maternal grandfather, learning the area like the back of his hand. His connection was so strong the first thing he did after basic training was to go there on his two-week furlough, taking his very pregnant wife along, before going to battle in WWII. Following the war every minute he could find was spent in Island Park. Waiting for summer wasn’t enough, winter had to be conquered. He often bragged that he was the first person to snowmobile into his cabin, on what was possibly the most pathetic excuse for a snowmobile, which had to be started with a rope pull, and whose speed was that of a turtle. My story is very similar to others who have a strong heritage and connection to this land. My family started with the railway corridor, connecting us to the Island Park community, now primarily by highways. Wildlife also has its migratory corridor which still exists today. These connections are meant to stay and not be environmentally engineered into something different, or usurped into another entity.

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Biodiversity and Ecosystems (Part 2 of 6)

This is the second of a six-part series. The reader is highly encouraged to go to these websites and study what is discussed in these articles in order to make an informed decision.

After gathering wood in the forest for a warm fire, my father insisted that we not only clean up our mess, but clean up other slash and debris in the area. I did not understand at the time he was teaching us how to take care of the land in Island Park. Another dreaded chore was cutting down tall, overgrown grass around the cabin during the hot August summers. He knew this was a fire load that could potentially fuel a major fire. But we also went on our special trip for huckleberries. No habitat was destroyed, the vegetation is still there, and the huckleberries still grow. Daddy, thank you for teaching me how to care for and respect the land in Island Park.

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Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy (CWCS) to SWAP (Part 1 of 6)

This is the first of a six-part series. The reader is highly encouraged to go to these websites and study what is discussed in these articles in order to make an informed decision.

As a child in Island Park, frequent visits by a squirrel to the cabin resulted in my grandfather naming him Pete. With various family coaxing Pete to take food from our hand, my grandfather was the only one who succeeded. Pete was a neighbor that visited often for the food left out for him and our family was honored by his visits. Respectfully staying inside until she moved on with her journey, we watched many mother moose passing by with calves, respecting their rights to passage. Placing land into conservation status will forever remove these experiences. As private landowners, we live with animals, and they live with us without any harm to them. We are meant to be together.

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Battle brewing over national monuments in Nevada, elsewhere

WASHINGTON — A battle is brewing between activists across the political spectrum over a Trump administration review of recently established national monuments, including Gold Butte in Nevada, and a 1906 law that permits presidential protection of public lands.

In the most recent salvo, 71 environmental and natural resource lawyers sent a letter to the administration saying a White House executive order that authorized the review incorrectly implied that President Donald Trump has the authority to rescind or modify national monuments created by previous presidents.

It does not, the lawyers insisted: “Congress retained that power for itself.”

But conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation and The Sutherland Institute argue Trump has the authority to manage public lands and reduce the size of national monuments, a practice that has occurred several times.

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