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Grants Pass man sentenced for damaging archaeological site

MEDFORD, Ore. (AP) - A Grants Pass man was sentenced in federal court to three years of probation for excavating and damaging an archaeological site on federal land.

U.S. District Court Judge Ann Aiken sentenced Jason Christopher Ruppel last week for violating the Archaeological Resources Protection Act.

Ruppel had pleaded guilty to the felony charge in February.

He admitted that in 2013, he violated the Act by digging on Bureau of Land Management land and damaging a known archaeological resource.

Ruppel was seen excavating and removing items from the site on at least seven different days during a two-month period.

The site is part of the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon's ancestral homelands. The tribe submitted a letter at sentencing expressing their concerns about the damage done.

Ruppel was also ordered to pay $2,500 in restitution for costs associated with restoring the site.


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