KJZZ is a service of Rio Salado College,
and Maricopa Community Colleges

Copyright © 2024 KJZZ/Rio Salado College/MCCCD
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Ritzheimer Pleads Guilty To Role In Oregon Occupation

An Arizona man who helped illegally occupy a national wildlife refuge in Oregon earlier this year has pleaded guilty. Jon Ritzheimer admitted in federal court Monday to helping the leaders of the takeover.

Ritzheimer said he conspired with Ammon Bundy and others to prevent Interior Department employees from doing their jobs at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Ritzheimer was one of the more well-known faces of the occupation, which lasted more than five weeks. The ex-Marine posted several videos to social media, including one where he got angry at people for sending him adult toys after he had put out a call for the public to send snacks to the occupiers.

Ritzheimer is also known in Arizona for organizing an anti-Islam rally last year.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Gabriel said prosecutors will recommend two-and-a-half years in prison for Ritzheimer when he’s sentenced in May.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Stina Sieg was a senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2013 to 2018.