Refuge standoff defendant can be his own lawyer

Jason Patrick is now the third co-defendant in the case to represent himself

Jason Patrick in an appearance in US Federal Court in downtown Portland, Jan. 29, 2016 (Abigail Marble/Courtroom Sketch)
Jason Patrick in an appearance in US Federal Court in downtown Portland, Jan. 29, 2016 (Abigail Marble/Courtroom Sketch)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – One of the defendants involved in the armed takeover of an Oregon wildlife refuge has been allowed to represent himself in the case.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports U.S. District Judge Anna Brown allowed Jason Patrick to be his own lawyer Wednesday, but not without questioning his ability to act appropriately without legal counsel to guide him. She appointed Andrew Kohlmetz to be his standby attorney.

In previous court appearances, Patrick has been scolded for making outbursts and speaking out of turn.

The 44-year-old roofer from Georgia is now the third co-defendant in the case to represent himself. A request from a fourth defendant, Duane Ehmer, is pending.

Patrick has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and weapons charges related to the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge earlier this year.

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