White Man Shot In The Back By Police With Hands Up. What Time Do The Riots Start?
A leader of the armed occupation of a federal wildlife refuge killed by police was shot three times in the back, a county prosecutor said on Tuesday, calling the shooting “justified and necessary.”
Robert “LaVoy” Finicum died at the hands of Oregon State Police on Jan. 26 after he ran from his pickup truck at a roadblock along a snow-covered roadside during the occupation by lands rights protesters at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.
Relatives of Finicum, who was a spokesman for the group that seized buildings at the refuge, have previously said that he posed no threat to police during the confrontation and have rejected official assertions that he was armed.
Speaking at a press conference in Bend, Oregon, Deschutes County Sheriff Shane Nelson said a loaded 9mm handgun was found in Finicum’s jacket pocket following the shooting.
Malheur County District Attorney Dan Norris said eight shots were fired at Finicum, six of them by Oregon State Police officers and two by FBI agents.
An autopsy found that three of the bullets fired by Oregon State Police officers struck Finicum in the base of the neck, shoulder and lower back and led to his death, Norris said.
“The six shots fired by the Oregon State Police were justified and in fact necessary,” Norris said.
During the press conference, officials played video and audio tapes of the confrontation, during which Finicum can be heard telling law enforcement officers: “Go ahead, put the bullet through me.”
At another point he is heard to say: “If you want a bloodbath, it’s on your hands.”