The LaVoy Finicum shooting video is now on the internet, with the FBI releasing footage showing the fatal shooting of the armed Oregon protester.
Finicum was among a group that seized a federal wildlife facility in Oregon as a protest against the government. He died on Tuesday when police stopped two groups of cars of the Oregon Occupiers, including ringleader Ammon Bundy.
During the stop, police said LaVoy Finicum tried to drive away from police, but at a roadblock his white truck became stuck and he confronted Oregon State Police officers, who ultimately shot and killed him.
The death of LaVoy Finicum was captured on video taken by an FBI plane, USA Today noted, and released on Thursday night.
“I want to caution you that the video does show the shooting death of LaVoy Finicum,” said FBI agent Greg Bretzing. “We realize that viewing that piece of the video will be upsetting to some people, but we feel that it is necessary to show the whole thing unedited in the interest of transparency.”
The release of the LaVoy Finicum shooting video is likely in response to supporters who had claimed that police shot down the 54-year-old rancher in cold blood. Some witnesses claimed that Finicum was surrendering or even had his hands up as he was shot.
But the video showed otherwise, the FBI noted.
“Finicum leaves the truck and steps through the snow,” Bretzing said. “Agents and troopers on scene had information that Finicum and others would be armed. On at least two occasions, Finicum reaches his right hand toward a pocket on the left inside portion of his jacket. He did have a loaded 9 mm semi-automatic handgun in that pocket. At this time, OSP troopers shot Finicum.”
FBI agents added that police found three loaded weapons inside Finicum’s vehicle, including two.223 caliber semi-automatic rifles.
LaVoy Finicum served as the most public face of the Oregon occupation, posting regular updates on YouTube and giving interviews with local media. He was famous for his cowboy hat and the blue tarp which he sat under while giving interviews.
Oregon death: “It didn’t have to happen. We all make choices in life. Sometimes our choices go badly,” sheriff says https://t.co/Rs1bFrVP9M
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) January 27, 2016
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) January 29, 2016
But Finicum also seemed to predict his violent end, saying previously that he did not plan on being taken alive.
“I’m not going to end up in prison,” he said, via the New York Times. “I would rather die than be caged. And I’ve lived a good life.”
Finicum was father to 11 children in Arizona, where he and his wife served as foster parents. In recent days Finicum said state child protective services had taken away the children, which he believed was a pressure tactic meant to bring an end to the occupation.
Family members were conflicted about the stand, with some regretting the stance Finicum and the occupiers took.
“He is very, very passionate about freedom, and this is a fight that he’s been fighting for quite some time,” Robert Finicum said of his father. “I mean from my point of view — it’s hard. I can agree with so much of his cause, and, sure, I wish that it had happened a little bit differently. I wish that they wouldn’t have occupied that building. Even though there was nobody there. Because I imagine he would still be with us had that not happened.”
The edited, shortened version of the LaVoy Finicum shooting video can be seen below.
Warning: Some viewers might find the video disturbing.
The FBI also published the full, unedited 26-minute video of the LaVoy Finicum shooting, including the chase that led to his confrontation. It can be seen here.
[Photo by FBI via AP Images]