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Jury acquits Malheur Refuge standoff leaders on all charges

Central Oregon woman had just joined deliberations

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) —A jury on Thursday exonerated brothers Ammon and Ryan Bundy and five others of conspiring to impede federal workers from their jobs at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Some of the defendants also were charged with possession of firearms at a federal facility and were acquitted on that count as well.

KGW reported that after the verdict was read, Marcus Mumford, Ammon Bundy's attorney, was tackled by U.S. Marshals as he was arguing with the judge. Mumford reportedly was yelling that his client was now free to go.

The standoff began Jan. 2 and lasted nearly six weeks, bringing new attention to a long-running dispute over control of federal lands in the U.S. West.

The Bundys are still facing charges in Nevada stemming from a high-profile 2014 standoff with federal agents trying to round up their father Cliven Bundy's cattle.

Earlier, jurors sent a note to the judge saying they've reached a consensus on all but one charge.

The jury also told the judge that further deliberations would not help them agree on that charge, which wasn't disclosed.

Standoff leaders Ammon and Ryan Bundy and five others were charged with conspiring to impede federal workers from their jobs at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Several also were charged with possessing a firearm in a federal facility.

The standoff began Jan. 2 and lasted nearly six weeks, bringing new attention to a long-running dispute over control of federal lands in the U.S. West.

An alternate juror arrived Thursday at the federal courthouse in Portland, allowing deliberations to resume in the trial.

The woman from Central Oregon known as Juror No. 18 replaced a man who was dismissed after another juror questioned his impartiality.

U.S. District Judge Anna Brown welcomed the new juror Thursday, and reminded the remaining jurors to disregard past deliberations and start over. She told them not to discuss why the alternate was needed.

The jury was in its fourth day of deliberations when Brown stopped them Wednesday.


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