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Is it true that Lon Horiuchi lives in fear for his life? (No Drift This Time Please!)

Discussion in 'Legal' started by The Real Hawkeye, Mar 19, 2006.

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  1. I kept meaning to check out the thread about Ruby Ridge, but kept getting distracted. Finally, I had time to look at it and participate, and I guess some people started it drifting over to a discussion of Waco (apparently a no no), and it got locked up before I could get to it. So, please keep this discussion on my topic, and don't drift to Waco. If you want to discuss Waco, try starting another thread. I know it seems highly related and relevant, but some moderators don't like the two discussed on the same thread.

    Here's what I wanted to comment on.
    Actually, it's a question. Is the rumor true that Lon Horiuchi lives in constant fear for his life in a kind of protective custody on a military base? I had heard this somewhere, and was wondering if anyone had verification of this, at least the living on an army base part. Thanks.
  2. griz

    griz Well-Known Member

    I believe he still works for the FBI doing the same job. I haven't heard your rumor.
  3. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    Rumor and hearsay: If he's still with the FBI, he's not on any HRT-type team. He embarassed the Bureau. He could not be seen as having made a "good shoot" under any circumstances, and were he to be so utilized by the Bureau, they'd take a lot of public flak.

    Allegedly, all the "So YOU'RE the guy who..." comments he gets from anybody he meets has him despondent.

    Again, rumor and hearsay.

  4. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Well-Known Member

    We can only hope he is despondent. The world would be a better place without him.
  5. R.H. Lee

    R.H. Lee Well-Known Member

    Who makes the 'shoot/no-shoot' decisions in HRT operations? Is it the 'sniper' independently, or was Horiuchi a tool of higher-ups, command and control or whatever?
  6. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Well-Known Member

    I don't think it matters in the case of Horiuchi who made the decision. He pulled the trigger on an un-armed woman holding a baby. At a minimum, he is responsible, and there may be culpability higher up the chain of command as well. I doubt we will ever know.
  7. stoky

    stoky Well-Known Member

    Whether the moderators like it or not the facts are that he was a shooter in both places and his accountability consisted of a wink and a nod from the powers that be.
    I think that he is proud to be above the law and hopes for further opportunities to drop the hammer on anyone else that tries to be too free. He is likely a role model for wanna be JBTs aspiring to be just like him. :barf:
  8. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    My understanding is that for each situation, the shoot/no-shoot rules of engagement are written, and are signed off by the person in charge.

    The problem is that a shooter might well violate the rules of engagement on his own decision, and then possibly a coverup can begin.

    Edit-add: If I remember right, the intended target was the man with the Weaver family, and at the time of the shot he was moving back into the house. If Horiuchi had been told to shoot him, then Horiuchi's skill level was not up to the task. Another facet is our often-mentioned rule about always knowing what's behind your intended target. Horiuchi missed the guy; Mrs. Weaver was standing behind, in the line of fire.

    It was pretty obvious from all reports--both official and unofficial--and from the public hearings that at Ruby Ridge, a strong CYA effort was put in place. The natural assumption is that when such a CYA effort begins, the rules of engagement were not followed.

  9. WT

    WT Well-Known Member

    I suspect Horiuchi is now retired from the FBI. He would be 52 years old and with his West Point - military experience, etc., he probably has 30+ years in federal service. He has probably moved back to his home in Hawaii. Maybe runs a SCUBA shop or teaches surfboarding.
  10. Husker1911

    Husker1911 Well-Known Member

    I would be happy to offer Mr. Horiuchi a single cartridge of his sidearm choice.
  11. TallPine

    TallPine Well-Known Member

    Well, if it's not then it should be :p

    He's probably living under an assumed name in some gated community somewhere.

    I don't think he would be either welcome or safe in my neck of the woods. Even the little old ladies are pretty "radical" around here.;)
  12. And I'd love to see it. Wouldn't it be nice if someone kept posting his address on the Internet, regardless of how many times he moved. If he is not going to be tried and hung, he should at least have to live the rest of his life in fear.

    I went on a tour of the FBI Headquarters back in October 2002. An FBI man gave a speech and took questions. I asked him, in front of a large audience, what the rules of engagement at Ruby Ridge were, and why the dog, the boy and the woman were thought to be ok to shoot. You should have seen this guy's reaction. He was pissed off as hell. He tried to laugh it all off, and call it ancient history that some people can't move on from, and basically didn't answer the question other than to express sympathy for Mr. H, and he called it a mistake anyone in that position can make. He implied that anyone still concerned about that whole thing had a mental problem. He also said that it's been harder to find people to work in that role in the FBI since the incident, expressing regret over that. But, you could tell, the guy was embarrassed by the question. I hope he gets that question in front of audiences frequently, but unfortunately, if you can believe it, I got the impression that most of the audience never heard of Ruby Ridge. I kept hearing people whispering, "What's Ruby Ridge?" "What's that guy talking about that got him so upset?"
  13. Spot77

    Spot77 Well-Known Member

    For all we know, he could be a well respected THR Moderator. :neener:
  14. Herself

    Herself member

    While I would never advocate the initiation of force, I certainly hope the rumor is true. It's not life in prison without possibility of parole or worse, but it's something. Even his being "despondent" is a little something.

    So what if the cause was "simple bad judgement," he killed someone who offered no threat to him. You don't get a free pass to do that, not in any decent society. It carries a heavy price the shooter must pay, no matter if it is you, me, or a highly-trained FBI sniper.[1]

    "I vass only followink orders!" Nope, won't wash: Be sure of your target and what's behind it. He wasn't. Even if the man's a tool -- and I don't know him well enough to make that call and do not care to -- it was his finger on the trigger. Either he recognized and shot anyway, or he couldn't tell and simply guessed, then shot at his guess. Either one is wrong.

    The entire situation was idiotic, an excellent example of why "shock and awe" military-type tactics are moronic methods for police work: they escalate the situation and get people killed. Especially when applied half-heartedly. [2]

    Has anyone here heard of "sousveillance?" It's sort of the opposite of "surveillance," tricks like pointing a webcam at and/or tracking it with a security camera in a public area, or staging little plays for 'em, that sort of thing. Hypothetically, one would have to wonder if some aspects of that approach might be applied to snipers in situations like Ruby Ridge. Of course, you'd need folks who knew the lay of the land well enough to locate them without undue bother, first. Even innocently asking the man in the tree or on the rooftop what he thought he was doin', callin' the police to report a suspicious prowler or taking him cookies and milk might keep another mother or child from gettin' whacked by some tacticoool d00d on the gummit payroll.

    Police and military skills are not the same, especially in "engagement." The goals are very different. LEOs hadn't ought to play soldier. Soldiers shouldn't play police. (Or only the MPs should -- and they are policing their own. It's a darned hard job and there are some darned fine folks doing it).

    1. Why is it the highly-trained types who have all these finely-honed skills get more leeway to make fatal or injurious errors than regular folks like us, anyway? It's like Mario Andretti getting away with running down pedestrians!

    2. A full-out surprise assault might very well have produced fewer casualties and less outcry -- and less publicity. Randy Weaver and family weren't exactly what you'd call shock troops. But the Feds wanted to play to the cameras and didn't want to look too evil. See how well that worked!
  15. Don Gwinn

    Don Gwinn Moderator Emeritus

    No, he really couldn't. :eek:

    The rules of engagement at Ruby Ridge were modified by officials en route to the scene while they were in the air. I don't recall every detail, but the guy who took most of the blame was named Potts.

    The rules were amended on this occasion to state that any armed adult should be treated as a threat and stopped.

    This meant that for Horiuchi to shoot at Randy Weaver while he was visiting the shed in which his son's body had been placed was within those rules of engagement. Although Weaver was not pointing his gun at anyone at that moment, he was armed. It also meant that shooting at Kevin (can't recall the last name) as he and Randy fled back inside the cabin was within those same rules--he was also armed. It was as or immediately after this man entered the cabin that Vicki Weaver was shot. She was standing in the doorway.

    Horiuchi tried two defenses at trial:

    1. There was a helicopter behind Horiuchi, and the men were threatening either him or the helicopter with rifles.
    However, it was shown that there was no helicopter in the area at that time and the men never knew Horiuchi was in position until he fired.

    2. He hit Vicki Weaver by accident, not knowing she was behind a door with the curtains pulled on the window in that door.
    At trial, it was shown that Horiuchi had made a sketch of the window on hotel paper the night of the shooting. In the sketch, the curtains are open and Vicki Weaver's body and head are clearly visible.

    Horiuchi, in my opinion, was in a shooting mode and did not stop to see whether Vicki Weaver was armed or not. He may have mistaken her for one of the two armed men at whom he'd been firing an instant before. It's hard to say. But his target was diving low and she was standing upright; missing the low target and hitting her head is hard to believe.

    Much more controversial to this day is the matter of who fired first when Sammy Weaver, Kevin and the dog encountered the U.S. Marshals in camouflage in the woods. The forensic evidence does seem to indicate that the Marshals shot first, but to my knowledge that service has never admitted it. Their official story is that they came under unprovoked fire from Sammy and Kevin and returned fire in self-defense.
  16. Nicky Santoro

    Nicky Santoro Well-Known Member

    Is it true that Lon Horiuchi lives in fear for his life?

    From all that I have read, this miserable little bastard was in the mood to kill that day. Since he has apparently escaped the legal system, I can only hope that he does not escape justice.
  17. AZRickD

    AZRickD Well-Known Member

    Horiuchi, featured here was part of one of six sniper teams that day:


    From his West Point Pic circa 1976:

    Lon claims that from his sniper hide some 200 yards away (a chip shot, actually) he was shooting at Kevin Harris


    as he was running from the shed where the dead son (Sammy, shot in the back by Federal Marshmallows the day before) of Randy Weaver was being kept. Kevin was running because Lon had already shot Randy in the back (under the armpit IIRC). Lon claims that the reason he shot at Randy was that Randy was shooting at a helicopter. The helicopter pilot reported not seeing anyone of the group pointing rifles at him, and I don't think any chopper was in range at the time.

    I'm guessing Lon had a better line of fire than shown in this picture:

    Vicki Weaver was at the door holding it open, and carrying her 10-month old daughter Elisheba when the bullet struck her on the tempe and exited down through her jaw/neck. Vicki crumpled to the ground on her knees, still holding a blood-drenched Elisheba. Vicki was sobbing before she died.

    The bullet fragments, along with bone from Vicki entered Kevin Harris' chest area as he passed behind her.

    Bullet hole in the cabin door:


    Lon's napkin sketch of the door

    The theory is that FBI HRT felt that Vicki was the one who was keeping them from surrendering. Whether this was an accident is still up to speculation from some.


    A coverup? Never... http://www.cnn.com/US/9610/22/fbi.ruby.ridge/

    FBI's Larry Potts who ordered the "shoot any armed man" order (and who was later promoted).


    Weaver awarded $3.1 Million

    Here is the Case of the State of Idaho v Horiuchi which the beloved Attorney General Janet Reno was able to move to federal jurisdiction where it was dismissed because Lon was "operating in the scope of his duties."


    If anyone has pictures of Vicki, Sara, and Elisheba, I'd appreciate them being posted here.

    Last edited: Mar 19, 2006
  18. If I'm walking peaceably in the woods with my dog, and someone in camouflage shoots my dog, how is that not provocation? :confused: That person's life would be over in a matter of seconds if I got a clear shot at him. A man's dog is his friend, a family member, and work partner. You don't shoot someone's dog and reasonably expect not to be fired on if the dog's owner is armed.
  19. geekWithA.45

    geekWithA.45 Moderator Emeritus

    I can't find the quote, but Col. Jeff Cooper periodically takes note that Lon Horiuchi remains alive and at large.
  20. Husker1911

    Husker1911 Well-Known Member

    Jeff Cooper, "The Federal agent who shot Vicki Weaver in the face, deliberately, while she was unarmed and holding her child is named Lon Horiuchi. Remember that name. He is still walking around loose. That man must eventually pay for his crime, here or hereafter. Lon Horiuchi."

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