Archive for August, 2017

Burns Chronicles No 59 – Ryan Bundy Holds the Key

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017

Burns Chronicles No 59

Ryan Bundy Holds the Key

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
August 30, 2017

On January 26, 2016, several people, in two private vehicles were on their way to a scheduled meeting John Day, Oregon.  While in a forested area, with extremely poor, if not non-existent, cell phone coverage, they were set upon by modern day highwaymen (highwaymen were people who stopped travelers and robbed them).  The driver and passengers of the second vehicle submitted to the demands of the heavily armed interlopers, at gunpoint, to leave the vehicle and sit on the side of the snow-covered roadway.

The driver of the second vehicle, a white pick-up truck, following the exit of one of the passengers, sped away, seeking the assistance of a peace officer, Sheriff Glenn Palmer, of Grant County, Oregon.  However, within a couple of miles they found that the highwaymen had set up a barricade across the road, barring passage.  The highwaymen, hidden behind their vehicles, began firing shots at the white truck.  This forced the truck off the road, where some rather adept driving may have saved one of the highwaymen’s life, by swerving, at the last moment.

The truck then came to a stop, and the driver, LaVoy Finicum, exited.  In the back seat were three people; Shawna Cox, Victoria Sharp, and Ryan Bundy.  Bundy sat on the left and Cox on the right.

Having already been shot at, there was concern for the safety of the party.  Finicum, in an effort to draw fire away from those still in the truck, began moving towards the rear and away from the truck.

There were lots of loud noises.  Some from 40 mm projectiles of rubber bullets and tear gas (OSP recovered 13 40 mm casings), others from flash-bang type grenades.  Included, however, were two shots that came from the left-rear of the truck.  One hit the top of the truck and one broke the driver side rear window.  The round that broke the window may well have hit the side of the truck, pressuring the window to break, and deflecting into the shoulder of Ryan Bundy.  This is the more logical explanation, as the velocity of the bullet, absent any other external resistance, should have penetrated much further than the fleshy part of Bundy’s shoulder.

Now, this gets interesting since the Oregon State Police (OSP) had to account for shots fired, though they could not account for two shots.  Shell casings were missing, and the rather perplexing task resulted in speculation regarding the bullet impact on the driver’s side of the truck.  Their conclusion was that it must have come from the shooter that fired three shots as the white truck approached the highwaymen, as shown in this OSP exhibit:

The government tried to attribute the shot at the rear door to the three shots fired as the vehicle approached the barricade.  However, this does not quite work, as if you look at the yellow line in the third image.  You see that if it did hit the truck, it would be a glancing strike.  It would have been deflected upon impact, and the initial point of impact would be the most damaged.  Any additional damage would have been less, as the bullet was deflected away from the truck body.  As you can see, the greater impact was on the right side of the gap between the door and frame.

. (more…)

Statement by Gary Hunt Regarding the Freedom of the Press – Show Cause Hearing of August 23, 2017

Saturday, August 26th, 2017

Statement by Gary Hunt
Regarding the Freedom of the Press;
Show Cause Hearing of August 23, 2017

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
August 26, 2017

I intended to write an article about the Freedom of the Press hearing in Portland, Oregon.  However, since I had decided to testify, I had mentally prepared to answer cross-examination questions, should they be asked.  My problem in writing this is that the answers given and the answers not given are mingled together in my mind, I can’t quite sort them out and be sure of the accuracy of what I say.  As to discussing other matters that were brought up, as well as examination and cross-examination of the government’s two witnesses, FBI SA Jason Kruger and FBI SA Matthew Catalano, are also mingled in my mind, as well as much that was presented by both the prosecuting attorney and my able counsel, Michael Rose.

Therefore, I will, at this time, simply give an overview, from my perspective, of what occurred.

AUSA (Assistant United States Attorney) Pamala Holsinger opened by telling us how damaging my exposing the informants was.  She then called FBI SA Jason Kruger to the stand.  Kruger must have listened to many hours of various internet radio shows I did, as well as reading, perhaps, all that I have written in both the “Burns Chronicles” and “Freedom of the Press” series.  I would say that he was accurate in his quoting from both, but often the words, without inflection and out of context, tell a story that is, at best, just close.  However, his testimony, until cross-examination, simply painted a picture of me saying that what I had written would help the defendants.

However, in cross-examination, he was referred to what he had written in his 302 reports and it was pointed out that I had said that my purpose in doing the outing was to shed light on the “Misdeeds of Government”, a phrase that I has been used for decades in describing my writing.

Next came Catalano.  Matthew is a nice guy and we got along well, in our two meetings.  However, his examination followed the same course.  Well, until cross-examination, where Mr. Rose elicited some more positive aspects of our meetings, as well as the fact that from the beginning, I had told Catalano that I didn’t believe that I was subject to a Protective Order, especially one issued out of  Oregon, and me not being among those to whom the Protective Order was addressed.

Now, the dilemma is that given what they had presented, both the positive and the negative were nothing more than words.  Very little about my motivation to investigate the identities and then write about the informants is addressed in the articles, themselves.  And, the radio shows, well, when you speak to an audience, you are not under oath, and you may tend to not present certain statements with sufficient explanation to put a proper context on what is said.  Kind of like a politician seeking election, but not telling you all that he believes.

Absent my testimony, where I could present the motivation, it would simply be a coin-toss as to whether the negative or positive would be used by Judge Anna Brown to make her ruling on the matter.

Interestingly, those who wish to ridicule me on the Internet reported that my attorney told me to “shut up”.  Well, that is very far from the truth.  The day before the Hearing, when I arrived in Portland, I met with him to discuss the hearing.  He asked if I had any witnesses to call, and I told him that I keep all but my articles to myself — that nobody could really speak to what my motivation was — except me.  He advised me of the dangers of taking the stand, though I already understood what those were.  It was clear that I could not speculate on the source, which was a comfort to me, as I simply had to tell the truth, that I didn’t know who sent me the Discovery information that was the evidence I used to identify the informants.  He said that he felt comfortable that I could take the stand, so it was decided that I would.

As my turn to take the stand arrived, Judge Brown asked whether I was properly advised of the potential risk, if I took the stand.  Mr. Rose explained that we had discussed that, and that I was aware of the necessity that I do so.  So, I took the stand and testified.

. (more…)

Freedom of the Press #18 – The Big Guns

Thursday, August 10th, 2017

Freedom of the Press #18
The Big Guns

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
August 10, 2017

August 8, 2017, was the date set for the government to file their response.  They did so in the Government’s Reply to Respondent’s Opposition to Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt.  That will be the subject of this article, however the recent background, since the May 9, 2017, Jurisdiction Hearing.

As a result of that Hearing, the government first filed the Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt (June 12, 2017).  That was the subject “Freedom of the Press #16 – Jurisdiction Hearing“.  It appears that since January, when the government sought to have me held in Contempt of Court, they have yet to come up with a case citation that supports their position.

My response was filed as Memorandum of Law in Opposition to the Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt (July 21, 2017).  This Memorandum increases the burden on the government, separating articles published before the “Supplemental Protective Order” and the one article published after that Order.  The government has yet to meet any standard of proof with regard to their legal responsibility to do so.

So, the current government Reply endeavors to regurgitate some of the same arguments that the government has relied upon, through the course of this ordeal.  For example, they have, from the beginning, relied upon Roviaro v. United States, 353 U.S. 53 (1957), when they state, “The substantial government interest in protecting confidential sources is long established.”  Where they fail in Roviaro, is that the protection is afforded by allowing the government to protect the identity of the informant.  In the words of the Roviaro decision, “What is usually referred to as the informer’s privilege is, in reality, the Government’s privilege to withhold from disclosure the identity of persons…”  What it does not do is to extend any criminal liability to those that disclose an informant’s identity.  It simply gives the government the right to try to protect the identity.

In the current matter, that was done to the extent that the law allows, the Protective Order that sanctioned those who were given certain information from disclosing that information.  It is only that person, whether a defendant, defendant’s counsel, or even government employee, was subject to the Court’s order not to divulge the identity of the informants.

The government did so even prior to the Discovery being given to the defendants, when they redacted what they believed to be any information that would tend to expose the informants.  The informant’s names were redacted as where many hundreds of words that the government felt would identify the informants.  The government keeping that information away from the defendants (the identification of informants) was their exercise of the protection of the informants, as per Roviaro.

The government continues to persist in stating, rightfully, “this Court had the authority to issue the orders and that it continues to have the authority to enforce the orders.”  However, they have yet to address the relevant aspect of jurisdiction.  To put this in context, if a judge in Mexico issues an order, he has such authority.  He also has the right to enforce that order.  However, does he have the jurisdiction to first, apply that order to someone not within his jurisdiction?  And, second, the authority to enforce the order against someone not within his jurisdiction?

The government wants to spin the context of what I said into a confession that is very, very far from my belief and honest admission as to the authority of the judge.

As the government continues, they make this rather curious assertion:

“When Hunt complains that this Court’s orders “prohibit” him from publishing “certain investigative pieces,” his factual premise is simply inaccurate.  Second, the justification for the original Protective Order continues because there is an ongoing need to protect cooperating witnesses regardless of the status of the trial.”

So, let’s break this down.  I have never complained about anything, except the fact that I was arrested by the government, similar to this current contempt situation, wrongfully applying a statute that did not apply to me, resulting in my spending a week in the Sacramento County Jail.  It would have been substantially longer had not Judge Brown seen through the deceitful tactic of the government in attempting to punish me, by simply lying to have a warrant issued for my arrest.  See Freedom of the Press #17 – Is This Legal?

Then, the government shysters endeavored to make a point:

“We are not asking this Court to restrain Hunt’s ability generally to write about the case — or even the informants — we only want him to observe this Court’s Order, which means that he cannot publish the discovery material subject to the Court’s Order.”

How nice of them to say that they don’t have a problem with me writing “about the case — or even the informants.”  How gracious.  However, these shysters are supposed to present facts.  My reputation as a journalist (not a blogger) is based on presenting facts.  Let’s suppose that I wrote about the informants, but failed to justify my conclusions without facts to back up those conclusions.  Well, then, I might just be a blogger.  However, as facts are a requisite in our judicial system, they are also a matter of principle to a good journalist.  To make accusations without presenting the facts makes a mockery of journalism, as it would of the judicial system.

Besides, such accusations are prolific in the patriot community.  They tend to lack any substance and are often made over a simple disagreement between two people.  Should some rely upon simply my word that so and so is an informant, the informant would simply accuse the accuser of being an informant.  And, the louder voice would probably prevail.  Surely, the government shysters would love to see an expansion of the “he said; she said” sort of rhetoric in the community.

As we continue through the Reply, we find this rather subjective statement of ‘facts’:

“[T]he government’s interests far outweigh any First Amendment interest Hunt may assert.  First, we need to protect our confidential sources for all of the valid reasons identified in Roviaro.  Second, the Court has a significant interest in enforcing the terms of its own Protective Orders.  Without enforcement, Hunt’s defiance threatens to undermine our ability to exchange discovery in future criminal cases.”

Now, the first point has already been addressed, with regard to the government’s right to endeavor to protect their sources — which they did by denying the defendants the right to call the witnesses against them (6th Amendment).  Second, the Court wrote the Protective Order and subjected those identified as subject to that Protective Order.  Daniel Ellsberg was the criminal in the “Pentagon Papers”.  The New York Times was not.  Finally, and the most laughable, is that the government feels that the exchange of discovery might be undermined.  Well, there is little doubt that the shysters want to keep as many secrets as they can from the defense.  However, in an effort to attempt to maintain their unscrupulous cadre of spies amongst us, they would willingly subvert the Constitution.

. (more…)