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A federal judge Tuesday affirmed another judge's earlier decision to release Oregon standoff figure Joseph O'Shaughnessy from custody with home detention and GPS monitoring and set over a release decision on independent broadcaster Peter Santilli until Thursday afternoon.
One video played in court captured O'Shaughnessy, in his own words, talking about being in Burns to set up a "constitutional security protection force'' just four days into the armed occupation. "It's clear he's talking about protecting the occupiers from federal law enforcement,'' Assistant U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Barrow said.
Mosman wasn't able to rule yet on whether or not to release co-defendant Santilli. Mosman said his decision will rest on learning more about the context of what federal prosecutors described as several "incendiary'' statements made by Santilli on his online video broadcasts. Santilli's court-appointed lawyer, Thomas Coan, described his client as a "shock jock in-your-face'' journalist who has been a "thorn'' to the federal government, and now is facing retaliation for such work.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Ethan Knight described Santilli as someone who can't be supervised under any conditions if released, citing examples of his "incendiary language'' against the U.S. marshals and federal authorities. He said Santilli did not play a "minimal'' or a "collateral'' role in the alleged conspiracy, but urged others to come to Burns to support the occupation.
Knight quoted from several statements Santilli had made on his show in late 2015, including remarks about burying guns in his backyard in California while facing a restraining order from a former co-worker. The prosecutor also mentioned a continuing investigation into an alleged threat he said Santilli made against a federal judge in Florida.
Knight further quoted a Santilli statement from his show, in which he said that "if the feds came through my door at 4 a.m., I'd shoot.'' Santilli's lawyer accused prosecutors of taking his client's statements out of context. The judge seemed to struggle with Santilli's quoted words.