When the government loses a case that might have been the “Trial of the Century”, they, like spoiled children, throw a tantrum
Nov 5, 2016 By Gary Hunt
On October 27, 2016, in a Federal Court in Portland, Oregon, Not Guilty Verdicts were read by the Court and affirmed by the Jury. Shortly thereafter, a rather interesting and unusual event occurred.
One of the ex-Defendants, Shawna Cox, described what happened when the Jury was excused:
As we stood for the Jury to leave the room, I watched in disbelief as the Judge told us to all sit down and remain seated while the US Marshalls removed Ammon Bundy, Ryan Bundy, and David Fry from the room.
We were still standing and Mr. Mumford raised both of his arms and leaning down into the microphone on the desk in front of him he said to the Judge: “NO Your Honor. These men are leaving this room with me, as FREE Men! The Jury has just acquitted them and they are free to leave!”
Judge Brown responded, “The Marshalls are going to take them back to the jail.”
Mumford said: “You Honor, the jury has just rendered the Not Guilty verdict, and you have no more jurisdiction, do you?”
Judge Brown responded, “Stop yelling at me Mr. Mumford, don’t ever yell at me again, ever. And No, I don’t. But the US Marshalls are going to retain them until they are returned to Nevada to stand trial there.”
Then Mumford said: “I have looked all day yesterday and all this morning and I can find no warrant for their arrest. Show me the paper! They were taken into custody the first time with no Warrant and you are not going to do it again! Show me the warrant! Show me the paper!”
Judge Brown said: “There is probably paper somewhere”.
During all this conversation, the US Marshalls had moved in close around Mr. Mumford who was still standing in his position behind the court table. There were five of them and more moving in. Mr. Mumford turned toward them still with his hands up and one of the Marshalls grabbed him by the left arm and another immediately grabbed his right arm and pulled him from behind the desk as they all began to push and pull at him.
One Marshall dropped him to his knees while another pushed him to the floor and put a knee into his back. Other Marshalls had moved in and now there was a total of eight. One Marshall on each arm and I could see his hands still open and up while another Marshall is telling him to put his arms behind his back. It was not possible with officers holding his arms.
Then, I saw them shove his head to the floor as he said, “I’m not resisting!” One Marshall had his left leg and was twisting his foot and leg (I was surprised at the stripped colorful sock Mumford was wearing) as his pant leg fell toward his knee.
This upset me and I was yelling: “What are you doing? What’s the matter with you?” Our victory just went out the window, and I was furious!!
More Federal Agents came rushing from the back of the room as the Judge yelled: “Everybody Out! Clear the Courtroom!” They rushed us out of there, but not before I saw a Marshall taze Mr. Mumford and I heard Mumford say, “You are hurting me!”
I was looking back in shock and horror and did not want to leave him there. I wanted to help him! I was very angry
Marshall taze Mr. Mumford
At that point, the remaining Defendants and attorneys were removed from the room.
Could a mature Judge have dealt with this matter without resorting to force? Heck, I thought that was what our judicial system was all about. Reasoned discussion, then conclusions. However, that is not what happened when the simply question of legal authority arose.
The Federal Protective Services then took Marcus Mumford into custody. He was cited for failure to comply with a federal lawful order and disturbance and released with a January 6 date to return to federal court.
When the government loses a case that might have been the “Trial of the Century”, they, like spoiled children, throw a tantrum. In this case, the tantrum was thrown at one of the few attorneys that really made a difference in this case—by their persistence and pursuit of justice.
And, as so often happens, the government is the victim and Mumford has to return to court after the first of the year—unless the anticipated legal filings result in a dismissal, before January 6, 2017.