Judge declares mistrial in Bundy standoff trial


After three full days and two half-days of deliberations, jurors found two men guilty in the 2014 Bundy ranch standoff, but were deadlocked on the majority of charges.

 An hour after instructing the jurors to go back into deliberations and try to reach a verdict, the judge declared a mistrial and set a date of June 26 for a second trial.

The men are on trial for a tense armed standoff that kept government officials from rounding up rancher Cliven Bundy’s cattle in 2014.

The defendants were each facing 10 counts.

Jurors found Todd Engel guilty on 2 counts for obstruction and extortion. Gregory Burleson, a former FBI informant, was found guilty on 8 counts including extortion, threatening a federal law enforcement officer, assault on a federal officer, obstruction of justice and firearms charges.

Jurors could not reach a verdict on the other defendants Eric Parker, O. Scott Drexler, Ricky Lovelien and Steven Stewart. 

Prosecutors declined to speak with 8 News NOW. 

The attorney for defendant Scott Drexler, Todd Leventhal, says he believes the overwhelming amount of evidence hurt the prosecution, instead of helping their case.

He says, he does plan to change his strategy for the second trial. He says he learned a lot after speaking with the jurors following the mistrial.

“They had a lot of opinions. What it was they liked. What they didn’t like. What they thought was good and wasn’t good. They thought the government came in with way too much evidence. They didn’t believe all of their witnesses, the so-called BLM agents,” Leventhal said.

The date of of the new trial, June 26, happens to be the same day the trial for Clivin Bundy and his two sons, Ammon and Ryan, along with a few others, are set to go to court. The Bundy trial will be pushed back at least 30 days after the retrial has ended.

Burleson will be sentenced on July 26 and Engel will be sentenced on July 27.

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