Man from Los Osos at Oregon standoff has murder conviction
January 22, 2016
A 68-year-old man from Los Osos is one of the protesters participating in the armed occupation of a wildlife refuge in Oregon. Years ago, he was convicted of second-degree murder in the death of his father, according to authorities and court records. [Oregonian]
Neil Wampler, 68, appeared in a YouTube video filmed at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. In the video, Wampler said he drove to Oregon from his Central Coast home.
Wampler told the Oregonian he is not the man who was convicted in the death of his father.
But, San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s spokesman Tony Cippola said a sheriff’s commander identified Wampler by watching the video. The sheriff’s office is aware Wampler is a convicted murderer, Cippola said.
Sheriff’s officials recently spoke with Wampler about whether he can possess a firearm, Cipolla said.
In Aug. 1977, Wampler was convicted in the killing of his father, Forey Edward Wampler, in Lake County, according to police reports and district attorney’s office records. Neil Wampler was 29 at the time. His name and date of birth matched court and prison records.
The Oregonian asked Wampler whether he is armed. He replied, “Oh yes.”
Wampler said he can legally possess a firearm. Cipolla said he cannot possess a gun because of the murder conviction.
Police reports and newspaper articles from the time of the killing state Wampler was accused of hitting his father in the head with a 16-inch rod while he was sleeping. After initially pleading not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity, Wampler changed his plea to guilty and was convicted.
He was released from prison in 1981.
In 2014, Wampler attended the armed standoff between ranchers and federal authorities at the Nevada ranch of Cliven Bundy. He was also at the Sugar Pine Mine confrontation that occurred last year in Southern Oregon.
“I am here to support my compadres in this effort against federal overreach,” Wampler said in the YouTube video filmed at the wildlife refuge. Wampler said he is protesting the “out of control and ever encroaching nature the federal government has displayed over a long period of time.”
He said no gunshots have been fired and no shots will be fired unless the feds try to force the protesters out. In such case, the feds would find out that we are not playing, Wampler said.
“We are peaceful people,” Wampler said. “I certainly am.”