What we know about the Malheur Wildlife Refuge arrests
Authorities have arrested eight members of the anti-government group that has occupied a federal nature preserve in Oregon, including leader Ammon Bundy. A ninth member was fatally shot by law-enforcement officers during a traffic stop on a rural road. A closer look at the situation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge:
WHAT WE KNOW:
- Bundy and his followers were in two vehicles, heading to a community meeting Tuesday in the town of John Day, when they were confronted by federal agents. One vehicle stopped, but the other drove on, with agents in pursuit, and it eventually got stuck in a snowbank. That's apparently when the shooting happened.
- The dead man was identified as Arizona rancher Robert "LaVoy" Finicum, 55, who had been a frequent and public presence at the refuge, often speaking for the group at news conferences.
- Those who were arrested - seven men and one woman - were taken to jail. Each will face a federal felony charge of conspiracy to impede officers from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats.
- Several of Bundy's followers remained at the refuge Wednesday. The FBI and the sheriff urged them to leave. The area was surrounded by law-enforcement officers.
WHAT WE DON'T KNOW:
- What led to the shooting or if Finicum or any of the other ranchers exchanged gunfire with officers. One of Bundy's followers says Finicum was shot when he charged at federal agents. Members of the Bundy family say Finicum did nothing to provoke authorities.
- How many shots were fired.
- Why authorities chose to act Tuesday, more than three weeks after the group took over the wildlife preserve.