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Three members of bison advocacy group arrested at Stephen's Cree - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Three members of bison advocacy group arrested at Stephen's Creek

Posted: Mar 07, 2018 4:01 PM Updated:

UPDATE: Three members of a bison advocacy group were charged in federal court on Wednesday for allegedly breaking into the Stephens Creek bison management facility and disrupting shipment of the animals.

Cody Cyson of Minnesota and Thomas L. Brown of Vermont were each charged with one count of entering a closed area and one count of interference with an agency function in Yellowstone National Park on March 7, 2018. 

Both suspects were contacted by park law enforcement in the Stephens Creek Administrative Facility on March 6, 2018 just after 5:00 am. Cyson and Brown has used a steel tube and chain to secure themselves to the squeeze chute in order to disrupt the shipping of the buffalo in the pens. 

In a separate incident, Hanna F. Ponder of Idaho, was charged on March 7, 2018, with one count of entering a closed area in Yellowstone National Park. Ponder was located by law enforcement in the bison closure of the Reese Creek drainage area during the morning hours of March 6, 2018. Ponder stated she had been walking the creek looking at birds. 

All three individuals made their initial appearance in U.S. District Court on March 7, 2018 where the government made a motion for detention of the individuals and a bond hearing is scheduled for March 12 at 10:30 a.m.


(1st Report) Three people were arrested after chaining themselves to a bison chute in Stephen's Creek at Yellowstone National Park.

According to the Facebook page of a group called Wild Buffalo Defense, the three people arrested were a part of their group.

The group says that their mission is to see bison roam free on the wild plains.

According to the Facebook post, two men were arrested at Stephens Creek at around 12:30 on Tuesday.

The third person was a woman who was arrested later outside of the facility.

The three are being held at the Yellowstone Justice Center and scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

According to a press release sent out by the Buffalo Field Campaign, the two men have been identified as Cody Cyson and Thomas Brown.

We do not yet know if either group was involved in the recent illegal release of bison at the facility.

The Facebook post states, in part: 

An hour before sunlight on march 6th two members of the Wild Buffalo Defense collective named Cody and Crow descended from the hills onto Yellowstone National Park’s Stevens Creek buffalo trap and using a steel pipe, locked themselves to the bars of the “Silencer”, a hydraulic squeeze shoot that holds buffalo for testing, shipping and slaughter. In freezing temperatures the individuals blocked the buffalo processing facility and prevented the park from shipping wild buffalo to slaughter.

When asked why he was taking this action Cody stated, “I am standing with the plains Indians as a member of the Ojibwe tribe in Minnesota, I have a Blackfeet friend who helped me protect my territory from the line 3 pipeline and now I am here for him and the buffalo. I have a love for the people. That’s what my mom passed down to me. And I have love for the environment and animals and I feel like I have an obligation to protect them. If I have to put my body on the line to do so I will.”

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