Kenneth W. Medenbach

Kenneth W. Medenbach

Courtesy of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office

A former Malheur National Wildlife Refuge occupier was sentenced Monday in Eugene to five years’ probation in a separate case in which he took over Bureau of Land Management property in Southern Oregon last year while challenging the government’s ownership of public lands.

Kenneth Medenbach, 63, returned to U.S. District Court in Eugene more than three months after a jury found him guilty of illegally camping and occupying BLM property near Galice, in rural Josephine County.

At the time of his April trial, Medenbach was being held in jail for his alleged role in the Malheur refuge takeover.

He was the first occupier to be arrested in the refuge case, having been taken into custody in mid-January in the parking lot of a supermarket in Burns while in a government-owned pickup. He has contended that he borrowed the vehicle from the refuge to make a grocery run.

Read more at The Register-Guard.