Help strengthen alternative media by visiting our supporters

Sheepdog Supplies

3% Stand With Snake River Ranchers

The ranching family has gained the support of the Idaho and Washington Chapters of the 3 Percenters.

3% Stand With Snake River Ranchers

3% Stand With Snake River Ranchers

by Shari Dovale

A dispute between the Federal government and a small ranching family in Washington has been ongoing for years, however it has recently gained the public’s attention.

Through the Spokesman Review, we learned about Walter “Sonny” Riley.

The 71-year-old rancher has become the focus of a legal effort by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Spokane, which is asking a federal judge to sanction Riley for “trespass, encroachment, damages” and make him pay the legal costs incurred by forcing Riley to abide by the rules on ground purchased by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers some 53 years ago.

“The government just has too many employees and too much money,” said Riley’s nephew, Chad Lindgren, who works Riley’s River Ranch. “They are not going to back down. They are not going to give in unless we make them give in.”

And, he noted, the yearslong dispute is being funded by taxpayers: “We are basically paying those people to be a pain in our ass.”

The government filed just last month against Riley’s River Ranch. They allege that:

Riley and his employees “unlawfully” grazed, operated a “winter feedlot operation” and built unauthorized structures on federal land. It also alleges the ranch placed hay bales, feeders, machinery, debris, tires, manure piles, and “a pile of over fifty animal carcasses” on the disputed land.

Lindgren acknowledged that the ranch has traditionally used the land in dispute as a calving area for heifers. The flat land, and its accessibility, made it easier for the ranchers to monitor the young cows, he said.

But at no time, he said, did the ranch use the land as a feedlot operation, which are fenced enclosures where the ranch keeps about 500 cows and another 500 calves during winter months.

It was recently announced that Karen Budd-Falen, one of the nation’s top rancher-rights advocates, and who could soon become President Donald Trump’s pick to run the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has joined the legal team for the rancher. The Spokesman Review tells us:

Karen Budd-Falen, who practices law with her husband, Frank, in Cheyenne, Wyoming, filed paperwork Friday with U.S. District Court in Spokane to help represent Walter “Sonny” Riley along with Riley’s current attorney, Toni Meacham, of Connell, Washington.

Additionally, the ranching family has gained the support of the Washington Chapter of the 3 Percent Original group. In a press release, they announced their “wholehearted” support for Walter “Sonny” Riley.

Calling it “yet another overreach by the Federal Government” they state that the issues are caused by negligence on the part of of the Army Corps of Engineers.

The Washington chapter is joined by their brothers in Idaho:

The Idaho 3%ers are monitoring the situation closely. We back our neighbors in Washington. We will work with the Washington 3% in any and all ways possible. We encourage the federal government to do the right thing… but we are not going to hold our breath. ~Eric Parker, State lead ~The real Idaho 3%

Will the government look at their own carelessness in resolving this issue, and not put yet another ranching family through the Federal Court system for their own agenda?

The 3 percent, and all their neighbors, will be there to let you know.

Please support our coverage of your rights. Donate here:




5 Comments on 3% Stand With Snake River Ranchers

  1. 10+ years ago we put in at clarkston, WA and floated down your beautiful snake river to Tri Cities. It took the whole summer. Why would our deceitful government try to kick you precious beautiful people off beautiful land we passed. Your crime improving your land and feeding people. Our government probably wants to dig up your land and ship the minerals overseas. We need to find an attorney and the patriots that have been wrongfully imprisoned and punished should sue our government for a hundred million dollars and put most of that money in a nonprofit so our people would be able to defeat these miscreants in court. Step up patriot attorneys out there we need your help. Ty redoubt news Shari and Brett. Ty for all your support. Again ty all you precious patriots for everything.

  2. Get rid of BLM, forest service,EPA, let the state take care of it. We know first hand the taking of our lands by local and Fedral authorities. Fire suppression ponds earned me a year and half in prison. We have state permitting. Manufactured evidence by EPA used in federal court. We have pictures of our stock / fire suppression ponds. Our ponds/dams I repaired are over a hundred years old. Irrigation ditches with 8 ” trees growing in them. No tributaries. EPA drained our ponds manufacturing evidence for trial. Our federal defender used this information as did the Judge . Yes I am a whistleblower. Contract wild land firefighter. Forest service failed to protect local and firefighting community. I have been disarmed. Hopefully I will not end up like our brother rancher LaVoy Finnicum. Can’t put up much of a fight with my cane and my service dog. 78 year old disabled veteran.

  3. Here we go again. As the Feds have already lost in Courts, murdered one Rancher, incarcerated others, they continue to keep up their land grabbing by using the Courts. Stunning and shameless. These clashes need to end, the easy solution, get rid of the BLM altogether.

  4. There is one small in accuracy in the story. The land, in question was not actually purchased by the US government from the information I have received so far. It was seized through imminent domain. There was a tentative agreement reached between the Rancher and the government to actually purchase the land. But, the government renege on the contract. The Washington 3% is also joined by the by the regional organization in seeking a way through this.

Comments are closed.