BURNS, OREGON – January 30, 2016 (Last Updated 1/31/2016 at 3:37 AM) — BREAKING NEWS: Shawna Cox is one of five occupants who traveled in with LaVoy Finicum in his white pickup truck on January 26, 2016. Tonight at 10pm Mountain, Rick Koerber and Free Capitalist Radio broadcast ((video below)) her first-hand statements from a telephone interview earlier in the day, recounting the events she experienced, including the tragic shooting death of Mr. Finicum on January 26. This is the second eyewitness account being reported to the public, both differ dramatically from the official FBI story.
Prior to the Oregon State Police shooting, Mr. Finicum and the occupants were traveling north on U.S. 395, headed to a public meeting in John Day, Grant County, Oregon. At the meeting Ammon Bundy, LaVoy Finicum and Sheriff Glenn Palmer were expected to speak to a crowd of approximately 200+ supporters.
In fact, Oregon Senator Ron Wyden said yesterday that he and Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley had met with FBI Director James Comey and talked about the protesters at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge only “a few hours” before the dramatic incident, and had expressed concerns that the standoff was “a situation where the virus was spreading” and action needed to be taken. The “virus” apparently, was protest and civil disobedience. In any event, action was taken, and not only did it lead to several arrests, it also brought about the violent death of LaVoy Finicum by state and local law enforcement.
Countering what the FBI has called, a growing number of inaccurate and inflammatory accusations in social media (namely that Mr. Finicum was murdered “in cold blood”), on January 28 the FBI unexpectedly released ariel video of the tactical operation, including graphic footage of the shooting. The FBI also held a press conference and issued a formal statement interpreting the video.
But, the release of the video has fueled new outrage and skepticism in the official story. The FBI’s account is that “three shots” were fired killing Mr. Finicum as he allegedly appeared to reach for a gun in his belt or inside coat pocket (government agents have offered both versions of that story), after exiting his vehicle – at first with his hands up. But, an initial eyewitness account, along with several critical reviews of the video call the FBI version into serious question, claiming that government agents had already fired two shots at the truck (with no firing by Finicum or his passengers) and were firing at him when he exited the vehicle in an attempt to surrender.
FreeCapitalist.com has already published a detailed review of witness statements made so far, including statements by Ammon Bundy (to his wife and father), statements of a driver of the second vehicle Mr. Mark McConnell, and an eyewitness statement from an 18-year old female passenger in Mr. Finicum’s pickup, Victoria Sharp. The mainstream media has given little attention to Ms. Sharp’s first-hand recounting, including the firing of “hundreds” of rounds of ammunition and that Mr. Finicum was shot first, while his hands were in the air as he exited his vehicle. On the other hand, Facebook videos posted by Mr. McConnell have received broad attention where he claims (second hand) that Mr. Finicum was shot while rushing at law enforcement agents. (Update: 1/31/2016 Readers of FreeCapitalist.com pointed out after the publication of this story, that Mr. McConnell’s Facebook timeline now includes a new video apologizing for his second hand speculation.)
Today, Shawna Cox, who was also a passenger in Mr. Finicum’s truck provided a second eyewitness account of the events, including her efforts to try and help protect Ms. Sharp (and Ryan Bundy who was also a passenger) during “a hailstorm” of gunfire. Describing desperate pleas, screams, and constant prayer, Ms. Cox recounted her recollection of a barrage of “hundreds” of rounds of ammunition being fired into the white pickup truck by law enforcement agents – before, during and after Mr. Finicum’s death. The interview (included below) took place after Ms. Cox contacted me via text message, and in a subsequent telephone interview relayed her personal account of the events, including what she witnessed, what she heard and her first-hand recollection of how events were set-up by a suspected government informant.
In this January 30, 2016 episode of Free Capitalist Radio, Ms. Cox also expresses some reservation in sharing these details noting that, based upon her observation, the FBI and OSP wanted all of passengers in the vehicle dead, and that while free on pretrial release – she is still in a very risky legal and personal situation. But, she explains, “the truth must get out.” Her mission now, she says, is helping in the defense of all those arrested (including herself) and remaining dedicated to protecting the Constitution and continuing the fight to stop the abuses brought to light by the Malheur Refuge protest. In doing this, she says, she is also honoring the sacrifice made by LaVoy Finicum.
FreeCapitalist.com is planning to do a composite video of the FBI ariel footage accompanied with these two eyewitness accounts, and a related story comparing the factual allegations to the video evidence. This should be published in the next few days.
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