Media gets look at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge

Militia took over the wildlife refuge on Jan. 2, 2016

A sign at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, Feb. 12, 2016 (KOIN)

BURNS, Ore. (KOIN) — One day after the last occupiers at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge surrendered to federal authorities, the FBI offered a guided tour to media.

However, the media will not be allowed in the refuge which the FBI said remains a crime scene and checkpoints remain in place.

The FBI said the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge will remain closed for weeks as authorities gather additional evidence.

Various teams from the FBI — evidence collection, computer forensics, art crime — will be used during the investigation.

During the standoff, the FBI fortified their position with vehicles — but so did the militia. A bearcat and US Fish and Wildlife trucks blocked a road to impede the feds from storming their makeshift compound.

The occupiers had blockaded the road near the property with a government-owned heavy front-end loader and two pickup trucks. A group of tents and pickup trucks was clustered far beyond the barrier.

“We will process all of the vehicles and after we’re completed with our processing they will be turned back to the refuge,” said Larry Karl with the FBI’s Portland office. “They can assess the damage or if they can be put back into service.”

The FBI says it hasn’t found any rigged explosives or booby traps at the national wildlife refuge. Karl says investigators hoped to finish the safety sweep of the buildings and begin processing evidence Friday.

Over the course of their time investigating, the FBI will continue to build their case against the militia who occupied the federal refuge for 41 days.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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