Burns Chronicles No 40
Allen Varner aka Wolf
by Gary Hunt
November 15, 2016
When I wrote “What is Brandon Curtiss?“, I had nothing but gratitude for Wolf. He had stepped up when I was faced with Brandon Curtiss and his goons. His involvement allowed me to continue packing in order to leave Burns. The above picture was taken during this event.
There were some unanswered questions from an earlier incident. When the shootout occurred at Camp Lone Star, back on August 29, 2014, Varner was with Kevin “KC” Massey and John Foerster, on the Texas Border near Brownsville, when a Border Patrol (BP) Agent fired in the direction of Foerster. (See “The Arrest of K. C. Massey“.) Now questions arose as to Foerster’s role, but Varner appeared to be without sin. Varner, however, was the first to offer his pistol, in his belt under his shirt, to the BP agent, which led to Massey then turning his pistol over to BP. In hindsight, there were other questionable actions by Varner, though unrelated to the topic at hand.
Varner was quite cooperative in my interview with him and provided some information that only he had, which indicated that much of what BP did, out of sight of Massey, was not consistent with the testimony they offered in court. This could be interpreted as an attempt to ingratiate himself to Massey and myself.
According to Massey, Varner left Camp Lone Star within a couple of days of the shooting. He did not return until two days before Massey’s arrest. Was he there to report when Massey was going to spend the night in the motel room? Only someone at Camp Lone Star would have that information. At that critical time, Varner was at Camp Lone Star.
Now, often people have suspicion that someone could be an informant. I may have reason to believe someone is an informant. However, I will not write that someone is an informant unless I can prove that someone is an informant. So, ironically, the person that helped me while I was in Burns is, well, an informant.
Let’s get to the heart of the matter. To do so, I will be referring to FBI documents that I have obtained. They are marked, at the bottom left corner, “Dissemination Limited by Court Order”. So, let me make this perfectly clear — I have no intention of “disseminating” the documents, nor am I bound by any “Court Order”. I am writing about a Public Trial, which was held in September and October 2016. Had I access to these documents during that trial, I would have written the same article that I am writing now.
A Public Trial, as intended by the Founders, was guaranteed so that we could judge both the alleged crimes of the accused and the role of the government. This article, and subsequent articles on the subject of informants, is about the role of the government.
Informants are nothing less than spies, albeit, they are not spies set against foreign enemies or other countries. No, they are spies sent by the agents of the government to act against their own people. Whether they are paid, as was the case explained in my article “Terri Linnell (Mama Bear)“, to avoid prosecution for a crime they may have committed, or simply because they disagree with the politics of whomever they are informing against, they are nothing less than those contemptible creatures who, in most situations, face death if caught practicing their trade. The only exception would be when they realize that they are on the wrong side, and willingly change to the right side. This is addressed in another article, “Informants – What to do About Them“.
Using form “FD-1023”, also known as “CHS Reporting Document”, agents assigned to an informant provides information, based upon their communication, face to face, via text or email, by phone, or even secret messages, to place this information into the record.
Unfortunately, some of the records I have obtained are so severely redacted that nothing but the pre-printed form information is visible. However, often what the informant reported can be compared to information obtained in speaking with victims of the informant, or the information reported may become available in other public forums. Often, such information is “exculpatory” in nature, meaning that it tends to provide evidence that the accused may not be guilty of the crime with which he has been charged. So, I will provide some of the text from the reports and offer a perspective regarding both aspects. The entire body of information will not be provided in this article. A sampling should be sufficient to provide the reader with understanding of just how these spies operate, and how they may set their own trap. The spies will identify themselves as “CHS” (Confidential Human Source).
We will begin with January 4, 2016, two days after the occupation of the Refuge and the first identifiable report from Varner.
There are 25-30 people on the property to include 5 women who are assisting in cooking, etc. Most individuals are carrying side arms and CHS has not seen any Iongrifles, but knows they are there. CHS has not yet seen any explosives and one militia member is in the watch tower approximately 100 feet in the air. The militia will be conducting patrols at night. CHS will obtain license plates later this evening and saw one militia member driving a white 4X4 truck bearing US Government plate number I487752 presumed to belong to the refuge. The militia is expecting the FBI to arrive and know that they are being called trespassers and not domestic terrorists.
CHS observed the following vehicles:
[Note: first two vehicle descriptions and plate #s not included for the privacy of the owners]:
3) Jason Patrick, White Male, mid 40’s, 5’10″, 230 lbs, beard, mustache, seen driving the white 4X4 truck bearing US Government plate I487752.
So, we can see that this informant, along with others, provided a snapshot, updated frequently, of what was going on and who was present at the Refuge.
The next day, January 5:
Ammon Bundy, Brian Cavalier (Booda), Jason Patrick, Ryan Bundy, Ryan Payne, Blaine Cooper and Jon Ritzheimer are all staying in the main building up front. Pecking order CHS based on behavior observed is 1. Ammon Bundy 2. Ryan Payne and Jason Patrick 3. Brian Cavalier (Booda) and 4. Jon Ritzheimer. Booda is in charge of security. Ammon Bundy will more than likely speak with negotiators. CHS is in not staying in the front building and has not yet observed any formal plans. However, CHS is told the plan is to stay and wait for the FBI to make contact. They know the FBI will say they are trespassing, but believe it is B.S. as they do not recognize the land belonging to the federal government. They do not know what the FBI is thinking. By the FBI not taking any action, it has made militia members nervous/scared about the unknown. The militia does not know who will be arrested or exactly what plan of action will be taken when the FBI does make contact. CHS described the atmosphere as nervous, filled with anticipation and confusion if something were to happen. Some people are sleeping and they sleep in shifts.
No alcohol has been observed and approximately six people have been seen carrying side arms and long guns being .308 or 5.56 calibers on an AR platform. CH$ has been looking for explosives and has not observed any. The militia does have access to propane and fuel from the refuge itself. Patrols are being conducted and there is a person in the watch tower 24/7 with a long rifle and radio. There is a shift change in the watch tower at 3 a.m. CHS has not yet seen other set schedules at this time. CHS has asked about night vision equipment and the response received is that no night vision equipment is on site.
The following vehicle was observed on the property.
1999 Black GMC Truck bearing [state] plate # nnnnnn
The militia’s main objective is to have the property administered by the federal government returned to the people (States/counties). The second objective is to win the support of the American public to create the power needed to accomplish the first objective. At this point, everyone is united with these objectives. The militia believe they are currently winning by gaining support of the American public as well as the locals. They feel more empowered since the local are coming by and delivering supplies and the FBI has not yet reached out to the militia.
If the public demands they leave, CHS doesn’t think the militia will leave until additional pressure is placed upon them. CHS did not know what that pressure would be, but just asking the militia to leave will not work. If the FBI continues to do nothing, the militia will just gain more people on site and more power until the FBI is forced to react. None of the core leaders have made life ending preparations at this point, but Ammon Bundy and Ryan Payne have stated they would take a bullet if needed. Jon Ritzheimer stated he would go to jail, but appears very nervous and really does not want to serve any jail time. Militia members for the most part are just wondering around waiting for something to happen.
So, you can see that the FBI had a fairly decent picture of what was going on in the Refuge. You can also see what the intended (perhaps exculpatory) purpose of the occupation was, as well as the “state of mind” of the principal players. This was of importance during the trial, so we can understand why the government did not want the Defense to be able to identity and therefore call these people as witnesses.
CHS attended an administrative meeting today at 1:00 p.m. It was decided that three separate militia units will be created and led by Ryan Payne, Jon Ritzheimer and CHS. There are five people assigned to each militia unit leader and they are to conduct security patrols and other missions as requested by the “administration” .The three militia units will grow in size as more people arrive in support of the overall mission. All current fifteen members of the militia units intend to stay for the completion of the occupation…
Now, here is one of the little pieces used to deduce who the informant is. He is one of three militia group leaders. However, if we know (and we do) that Ryan Payne, Jon Ritzheimer, and Allen Varner were those three militia leaders, then we also know who “CHS” is.
CHS goes on to rank the principal players:
A ranking by the CHS of the most dangerous members on a scale of 1 to 10, ten being the most dangerous, included the following: Booda 9, Ritzheimer 8, Payne, Ammon Bundy 8 or 9, Ryan Bundy 8 or 9, Robert Finicum would most likely back down.
Rather interesting that he identified Robert (LaVoy) Finicum as most likely to back down.
In the January 6 report, we find more information, some tending to be exculpatory.
At least seven different vehicles driven by locals dropped by today to show support and deliver supplies to include, elk meat, steaks, hamburger meat, blankets, hand warmers, etc. The front porch of the bunkhouse used for cooking is now filled with food and supplies. One local stated he would be back again next week to drop off more supplies.CHS and others have been told to use the refuge’s fuel stored in large tanks for their personal use.
A… “Committee of Safety” held a long meeting with the Bundy’s today. [They were] to show their support for the refuge takeover. They were also going to explain at the meeting that the militia at the refuge were not “crazy gun toting people” as portrayed by some of the media.
An individual named McConnell claiming to be the leader of the Three Percenters Militia in Arizona showed up at the refuge last night or early this morning. The individual is physically fit, mid 40’s, 6’ in height, blonde hair, blonde mustache, driving a brown colored jeep. McConnell also claims to be a Marine and/or Navy Seal. CHS considered McConnell as strength for the militia at the refuge. CHS could not describe any weaknesses the militia has at this time. If anything, the militia continues to gain strength in morale because the locals continue to come by to show support and deliver supplies.
CHS described the atmosphere as calm and relaxed but still expecting something to happen. Patrols were done every four hours, people have been sleeping and milling around like a normal day.
In the January 7 report, we have another clue that helps to identify the CHS, along with other information.
As of this morning, there were approximately 35-40 people at the refuge. So many people have arrived that the new arrivals are sleeping on the floor and not in bunks. They are expecting a lot more people to show up today. “Will” is from the Seattle area and driving a Nissan X-Terra bearing Washington Marine Corps plate number nnnnnn. Will is the one who brought in the night vision equipment and it appears to be a night vision spotting scope. Will also brought with him a 300 Win Mag rifle. CHS also observed the following license plates: Nevada tag nnnnnn on a Ford F-150, Arizona tag nnnnnn on McConnell’s vehicle.
Last night at approximately 8:30 p.m., Louie Prepper at two others came over from their camp across the street and requested entry into the refuge and to speak with Robert LaVoy Finicum. CHS refused to allow them in resulting in a physical altercation. CHS was struck in the face and cut by Prepper and “Fat boy” (CHS’ description) from Colorado broke the mirror on CHS’ vehicle. CHS got up and kicked Fatboy in the groin causing severe pain to Fatboy. Pete Santilli told CHS to stand down and Prepper and the two others entered to refuge to encounter Blaine Cooper. Cooper got into a physical altercation with Prepper and the two others. Fatboy claimed Cooper broke his nose and was going to file a complaint and they left the refuge.
The ATV was used this morning to take supplies to the watchtower allowing for guards to stay in the tower for long periods of time. Two guys mainly occupy the watch tower which CHS has not yet met.
CHS has observed one 300 WIN Mag rifle, two SKS rifles, three AK-47’s, one 12 GA pump action riot shotgun and quite a few AR-15’s (5.56). Most are mainly carrying side arms and one female is carrying a sidearm.
Patrols continue every four hours and are conducted by 4-5 people in vehicles. Patrol routes around the refuge are not set, more like people driving around in vehicles. People do remain at the front and back gates. Patrols are not done on foot because of the snow. Most active use of communication is via supplied radios, but cellular telephones are also being used.
CHS has not heard any rumors about kidnapping a federal agent. Atmosphere remains relaxed.
A Washington Three Percenter Militia member named Darrel is currently assigned in the watch tower. There is now a flare gun in the tower that will be discharged to warn everyone within the refuge of incoming law enforcement raids. CHS observed the night vision equipment brought in last night and it appears to be mountable on a rifle. The militia still fails to have any grasp on organization. Currently, Patrick is attempting to create a list of shifts and assignments for members within the refuge. The three militia units previously created and led by Payne, Ritzheimer and CHS are still in play, but have not yet been assigned to complete any tasks.
CHS observed California license plate number nnnnnn on a dark blue Chevy Blazer. There are roughly 40-45 people within the refuge. The atmosphere remains relaxed and still waiting for something to happen.
You can see that the FBI had status reports that gave them a day-to-day update on the situation at the Refuge. We also see that Varner was still in charge of one of the militia groups. However, another confirmation of his identity is found when he described the broken mirror incident. In an interview with Varner, he said that he swung his fist to hit Louie (Lewis Arthur), hit the mirror instead, and hurt his hand.
We will skip the January 8 report, and since there were are no identifiable reports for January 9 and 10, go to January 11.
CHS provided two inert grenades taken from the refuge, a notebook recovered from the ground and showed case agent the hand held radio taken from Ritzheimer. People using cell phones are using the Zello walkie-talkie App to communicate. The notebook had several pages removed and contains limited to no useful information (see attached photographs).
The extra support has again made the administration and supporters feel as if they are winning.
The leadership was 1. Ammon and Ryan Bundy, 2. Jason Patrick, 3. Ryan Payne, 4. Ritzhiemer. Ammon and Ryan Bundy, LaVoy Finicum, and Payne remain as the administration of the refuge. Finicum was the self proclaimed media representative.
They group is calling themselves the “Citizens of Constitutional America” and not a militia. The administration is adamant that they do not call themselves a militia.
They have not constructed any defensive structures or positions such as rifle pits, sand bag cover, etc. The militia will more than likely use the heavy machinery on site for cover and have positioned some of this equipment at the entrances to the refuge. The patrol routes remain random around the perimeter and consist of individuals driving around in vehicles.
The interviewing agents showed the CHS an aerial photograph of the refuge complex with the buildings numbered. CHS described the use of the buildings as follows:
Building 19 – Fire Bunkhouse – CHS described this building as having 8 bedrooms, one bedroom has 4 bunks, the remaining rooms have two bunks each¯ All bunks were full.
Building 15 – Payne and Riztheimer were staying in the two small houses across the street from the firehouse
(building 19) . These houses have an exterior bathroom nearby¯
Building 18 – Warehouse
Building 11 – Warehouse/garage with lots of equipment
Building 17 or 16 -Generator building
Building 1 – Admin buildings were meetings are conducted
Building 6 – The two Bundy brothers and Finicum’s sleeping quarters
The third clue as to the identity of the source of these reports is related to the “hand-held radio”. Ritzheimer said that he gave it to Varner. In an interview with Varner, when asked directly about the radio, he said that Jon was in his truck with Blaine Cooper and he saw the radio sitting on the seat between them, but it was never given to him. However, at shift change the next morning, the new guard contacted Jon to say that he had no radio with which to communicate. It appears that Varner simply showed the radio to his handler, and then kept it for himself.
Two more identifiable reports were filed on January 15 and 16. They continued updating with regard to the status, positions, state of mind, etc., of those inside the Refuge. So, we can see that from this one source, a lot of information, some accurate, some not so accurate, was made available to the FBI. On top of this, understand that there were eight other informants reporting from inside the Refuge. There were also six additional informants in communication with the occupiers via telephone. Those occupiers inside believed that they were talking to outside “friendlies”, and managed to provide quite a bit of useful information to those informants. This topic will be addressed in a subsequent article.
In all fairness to Varner, I called him after I had finished the article. I read him the statements about the three militia groups, the encounter with Lewis Arthur, and the report where he showed the radio he got from Ritzheimer to the case agent. He stated that somebody lied — that it was bullshit. He concluded with, “I ain’t no informant or agent”.