Plains woman testifies in 2nd refuge standoff trial - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Plains woman testifies in 2nd refuge standoff trial

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A Plains woman tells a federal jury of her son's fearful call, as he phoned to say "goodbye" with a shaking voice at last year's armed standoff at a Eastern Oregon wildlife refuge.

Roxsanna Ryan told the story as she testified Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Portland, where her son Jake Ryan is one of several defendants accused of occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge last winter.

The standoff lasted for several weeks when brothers Ryan and Ammon Bundy and a group of supporters occupied the refuge to show opposition to federal lands management was impacting a local rancher.

But the occupation turned violent when Robert "LaVoy" Finicum was shot by law enforcement following a chase and confrontation outside the refuge.

The Oregonian reports that Roxsanna Ryan told how Finicum's death had frightened her son, calling to ask her to "say goodbye to everyone for me." She said Ryan had taken supplies to the refuge during the standoff, and she wasn't surprised when he decided to join the occupiers, after watching on Youtube videos of the standoff.

Ryan was arrested several weeks after the standoff ended, hiding in a shed outside Vancouver, Washington.

Along with three other defendants, the 28-year-old Ryan is facing conspiracy, weapons and misdemeanor charges.

The Bundys and other defendants were acquitted during the first trial last fall. Closing arguments are expected early next week.

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