Arizona Man Involved In Oregon Standoff Makes First Court Appearance

By Jude Joffe-Block
Published: Wednesday, January 27, 2016 - 10:04pm
Updated: Wednesday, January 27, 2016 - 10:08pm
(Photo courtesy of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office)
Jon Ritzheimer was arrested in Arizona in connection to the Oregon standoff.

An Arizona man who was part of a standoff against the federal government at an Oregon wildlife refuge had his first appearance in federal court in Phoenix on Wednesday afternoon.

Jon Ritzheimer, 32, is currently in the custody of the U.S. Marshals.

Federal agents arrested members of the armed group in Oregon on Tuesday in a confrontation that left Arizona rancher Robert “LaVoy” Finicum dead.

At the time, Ritzheimer was already back in Arizona. Before turning himself in to local authorities, he posted to social media a video and plea for donations.

He appeared in Federal Magistrate Judge David Duncan’s courtroom on Wednesday in shackles, wearing a red and black plaid shirt and khaki cargo pants.

Ritzheimer and seven others have been charged with conspiring to impede federal agents.

Duncan determined Ritzheimer qualifies for a court-appointed lawyer. On Tuesday a different judge will decide whether he qualifies for bond. Ultimately he is expected to be sent to Oregon.

An unidentified woman in the courtroom cried when Ritzheimer entered. She and his lawyer both declined to comment.