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News Release
Final Defendant Sentenced for Armed Takeover of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge - 06/12/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Blaine Cooper aka Stanley Blaine Hicks, 38, of Humboldt, Arizona, was sentenced today to time served in prison for his role in the 41-day armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge beginning in January 2016.

Cooper is the eighteenth and final defendant sentenced for crimes associated with the occupation. Eleven defendants pleaded guilty to felony conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. Four other defendants were convicted of felonies by a federal jury in a trial ending in March 2017. Three additional defendants pleaded guilty to misdemeanor trespassing. Seven defendants, including occupation leaders Ammon and Ryan Bundy, were acquitted of all charges in a trial ending in November 2016.

“I firmly believe that our communities and state are stronger because of our shared experience responding to and litigating the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge,” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon. “I want to sincerely thank the countless federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement officials that played a role in bringing these eighteen defendants to justice. Our message is clear,” continued Williams, “taking up arms because you don’t like how things are done will never be accepted as a lawful way to protest here in Oregon or elsewhere.”

“The U.S. Constitution granted Americans both rights and responsibilities. With state, local and tribal partners, the FBI responded to this armed takeover by defending the rule of law and protecting the people of Harney County. We stand with Oregonians committed to finding peaceful solutions and will always work to protect our communities from violent conflict,” said Renn Cannon, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon.

Beginning on January 2, 2016, Ammon Bundy, Ryan Bundy, and several dozen followers, seized the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Oregon in Harney County. For forty-one days, the armed occupiers prevented federal officials from performing their official duties at the refuge by force, threats, and intimidation. The Bundys and several other occupiers, were arrested on January 26, 2016 on U.S. Highway 395 near Burns en route to a community meeting in John Day, Oregon. The occupation officially ended on February 11, 2016 when the last four occupiers turned themselves in to federal authorities.          

Summary of sentences imposed:

Dylan Anderson, 37, of Provo, Utah, was sentenced to one year of probation and $1,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count of misdemeanor trespassing.

Sandra Anderson, 50, of Riggins, Idaho, was sentenced to one year of probation and $1,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count of misdemeanor trespassing.

Sean Anderson, 50, of Riggins, Idaho, was sentenced to one year of probation and $1,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count of misdemeanor trespassing.

Jason Blomgren, 44, of North Carolina, was sentenced to two years’ probation and $3,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility.

Brian Cavalier, 47, of Bunkerville, Nevada, was sentenced to time served in prison, two years’ supervised release, and $7,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility.

Blaine Cooper, 38, of Humboldt, Arizona was sentenced to time served in prison and $7,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S.

Travis Cox, 23, of Bend, Oregon, was sentenced to two years’ probation and $3,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility.

Duane Ehmer, 47, of Irrigon, Oregon, was sentenced to one year and one day in prison, three years’ supervised release, and $10,000 restitution after being found guilty on one count of depredation of government property and one count each of misdemeanor trespassing and tampering with vehicles and equipment.

Eric Flores, 24, of Tulalip, Washington, was sentenced to two years’ probation with home detention after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S.

Wesley Kjar, 34, of Manti, Utah, was sentenced to 250 hours of community service, two years’ probation, and $3,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility.

Corey Lequieu, 47, of Fallon, Utah, was sentenced to 30 months in prison and three years’ supervised release after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S.

Joseph O’Shaughnessy, 46, of Cottonwood, Arizona, was sentenced to time served in prison, two years’ supervised release, and $7,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S.

Jason Patrick, 46, of Bonaire, Georgia, was sentenced to 21 months in prison, three years’ supervised release, and $10,000 restitution after being found guilty on one count of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and one count each of misdemeanor trespassing, tampering with vehicles and equipment, and destruction and removal of property.

Ryan Payne, 34, of Anaconda, Montana, was sentenced to 37 months in prison, three years’ supervised release, and $10,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility.

John Ritzheimer, 34, of Peoria, Arizona, was sentenced to one year and one day in prison, one year in a residential reentry center, three years’ supervised release, and $10,000 restitution after pleading guilty to one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility.

Jake Ryan, 29, of Plains, Montana, was sentenced to 12 months in prison, three years’ supervised release, and $10,000 restitution after being found guilty on one count of depredation of government property and one count each of misdemeanor trespassing and tampering with vehicles and equipment.

Geoffrey Stanek, 28, of Lafayette, Oregon, was sentenced to two years’ probation after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S.

Darryl Thorn, 33, of Monument, Oregon, was sentenced to 18 months in prison and $5,000 restitution after being found guilty of one count each of conspiracy to impede officers of the U.S. and possession of a firearm in a federal facility and one count each of misdemeanor trespassing, tampering with vehicles and equipment, and destruction and removal of property.

The case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by Geoffrey Barrow, Ethan Knight, and Craig Gabriel, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.

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Attached Media Files: SENTENCING-Cooper-Final.pdf
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