A scuffle broke out in court after the defendants were acquitted for the armed takeover of a U.S. wildlife refuge. The judge ordered the courtroom closed when a federal court jury on Wednesday acquitted anti-government militant leader Ammon Bundy and six followers of conspiracy charges stemming from their role in the armed takeover of a U.S. wildlife center in Oregon earlier this year.
The government accused the leader, Ammon Bundy, and his followers of engaging in a scheme to seize federal property by force during the 41-day standoff.
The standoff led to the shooting death of one protester by police.
The six men and one woman on trial were charged with conspiracy to impede federal officers through intimidation, threats or force, as well as possession of firearms in a federal facility and theft of government property.
One of Bundy’s attorneys, J. Morgan Philpot, said he was satisfied with the judge’s decision, adding he believed the integrity of the trial had been preserved.
“I don’t think anybody wants a mistrial,” Philpot said. “I don’t think anything tends to indicate a taint in the jury at this time.”