Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Oregon - Jon Ritzheimer's post-sentence letter

Consider this my post sentence statement that I never got to make due to the Marshall’s Office needing to see me after my sentencing.  I want to start by thanking everyone who has stood by my side through all of this and continues to support me and my family as well as the other patriot families who are still having to endure what appears to be a vindictive persecution.  I am truly humbled by the compassion I have received during this.

On November 30th, I was sentenced to 1 year and 1 day by Judge Anna Brown.  While it is not what I personally wanted, I feel it is a small price to pay and pales in comparison to what I have had to watch my fellow patriots go through thus far.  I want people to know that I am ok with the sentence and looking forward to serving it and moving on with my life.  I have every intention of wearing my conviction as a badge of honor.

I have had a few people questioning me about my apology in court so I would like to take this opportunity to clarify that.  I did read through the victim statements that were submitted and while it was very obvious that some of them were embellished it was also very clear that some of these people were actually afraid because the FBI came to their house and falsely told them that they were in danger.  It was never my intention for anyone to feel afraid of us.  So my apology is on an individual and personal basis.  It was not however, an apology to the Government.  I am still very displeased with how things have been going in this Government.

Next I would like to address the symbolic statement I made by removing my military medals from my chest during sentencing and telling the judge that I am no long proud of these.  I want people to know that I have not been proud of them for a while now and it is because I have accepted the reality that while I was in Iraq just following orders, I was not upholding my oath to the Constitution.  I did not mean this to be any form of disrespect to my fellow Veterans.  I believe fighting by my brothers side in Iraq, to ensure they had a better chance of returning home to their families was a good enough reason to be there at this point.  But the overall mission in that undeclared and unconstitutional war has not one bit of valor to it.  This Government has the most blood on its hands but it has never had to feel the blood on its hands like me and my brothers have actually had to do.  And as a man who is now working on the fine art of forgiveness, I am finding it difficult to forgive this government.

I would like to now shift gears and address the statements made by the Government during my sentencing.  I found myself lying in bed the night I was sentenced and kicking myself in the butt because I failed to point out some very important facts that the Government strategically left out.  They called me a “leader” in this endeavor and I am honored to be known as one of the few that led some of the most honorable people I have ever met.  They submitted a picture that had a breakdown of the chain of command at the refuge and pointed out that I was known as Rogue.  But what they failed to point out was that 1/3 of the names they claimed I was the leader of were informants.  So just to be clear, paid informants came to the refuge and asked me where they could be of assistance and gave the false impression that they were there to help but the reality is that this looks more and more like entrapment as things continue to unfold.

They also spoke about the night of January 5th.  They read off a small piece of a larger statement I made about taking a “defensive position” and pointed out that I was dressed in camo and had an AR-15 slung on my back that night.  They said I did this because I wrongfully thought the FBI was going to raid the refuge that night.  It should be known that the only reason we thought the FBI was going to come in that night was that a paid informant named Mark McConnell came to the refuge on that day and told us that the FBI was coming in and they were going to shoot first and ask questions later.  This is the same informant that helped set up the ambush which led to the death of my dear friend, LaVoy Finicum.  I also have a recorded phone call with Mark McConnell’s ex-wife that was married to him at the time, who told me that Mark McConnell received $100,000 for his involvement in the setting up of the ambush.

So as I stated earlier, I am going to wear this conviction as a badge of honor.  This is not me encouraging others to do the same thing but at least I can now have the satisfaction of feeling like I actually upheld my oath to the Constitution and heeded the call from God when it came.  I plan on living a humble life from here on out and look forward to more and more truths coming to light as time goes on.  I have faith that we will see great things come from what is now known as one of the greatest acts of patriotic civil disobedience since the Boston Tea Party that was carried out by the Sons of Liberty and led by Samuel Adams himself, 2 years before that start of the American Revolution.  Liberty and freedom will always prevail as long as there are a few willing to actually stand for it.

So as I prepare myself for the continued righteous journey that God has set forth for me, I am now in the process of working to ensure that my family will be taken care of in my absence.  Since I am currently agreeing to not utilize my God given right that was outline in the second amendment of the Constitution, and therefore I can’t have anything to do with firearms, my wife will be auctioning off the two guns that I carried with me at the refuge.  We reached out to a company called who is also responsible for selling the famous George Zimmerman handgun.  They were able to sell that gun for $250,000 and they are eager to help us raise as much as possible from these two firearms.  Our hope is to raise enough money to pay off the entire restitution for everyone involved in the Oregon Case.  [Note: The Auction began yesterday and will continue until February 1, 2018.]

We also hope to raise enough money to help the Finicum family and their fight to see justice for LaVoy.  These are the only two guns that were used in the initial takeover and made it out of the refuge.  The rest were  taken by the FBI.  The Sig P238 that I wore has been engraved and memorialized in honor of Robert LaVoy Finicum and put inside a case.  These guns are special given that they were actually used in their intended purpose that is outline in the second amendment.  Pictures of the guns will be found on when the auctions start.  We look forward to finding someone that wants to own these 2 pieces of history that took part in one of the greatest acts of patriotic civil disobedience since the Boston Tea Party.  Donations to help my family, while I am in prison, can be made to  I thank you all again for your continued support and may God continue to bless America!


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