Oregon occupation ends after 40 days with surrender of final holdouts

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The final holdout at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge in Oregon has peacefully surrendered, ending an armed occupation that started 40 days ago. One person was killed during the month-long standoff.

David Lee Fry, 27, was taken into custody by FBI agents just before 11 a.m. PT on Thursday. The surrender could be followed live on YouTube where an audio feed was available as activists Gavin Seim and KrisAnne Hall spoke with Fry and encouraged him to surrender peacefully.

After at one point pointing a gun to his head and threatening to kill himself, Fry decided to surrender just before 11 a.m. “If everyone says hallelujah, I’ll come out. I’ve got one more cookie. And one more cigarette,” he said, before FBI agents apparently said “hallelujah” and took him into custody without further incident.

Earlier on Thursday, at about 9:40 a.m., three other holdouts were also taken into custody after they surrendered without incident. They were identified as 47-year-old Sean Larry Anderson and 48-year-old Sandra Lynn Anderson, both of Riggins, Idaho, and 46-year-old Jeff Wayne Banta, of Yerington, Nevada.

“No one was injured, and no shots were fired,” the FBI said in a statement. “Agents arrested the remaining four occupiers as they walked out of the refuge to the FBI checkpoint. Those arrested will face arraignment before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Portland on Friday, February 12, 2016.”

The occupation began on January 2 when several dozen people seized the Malheur Wildlife Refuge south of Burns to protest the prison sentences of local ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond. The federal building was unoccupied when it was seized by the group and there had been no casualties until January 26, when suspect Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was shot dead after reaching into his jacket as the FBI attempted to arrest him.

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