By Trish Mehaffey
ATF Raid Nets Militia Man, Weapons Rap
Mon Nov 13, 2006 18:04


Lt. Commander Wayne Fincher, holding a 9mm Sten

Times Record - Fort Smith, AR

ATF Raid Nets Militia Man, Weapons Rap

Friday, November 10, 2006

By Trish Mehaffey


FAYETTEVILLE - A Fayetteville militia member was arrested Wednesday by teams of
special agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and
other federal and state agencies and local police in connection with illegal

Fayetteville police Lt. Mike Reynolds said 14 search warrants were executed
Wednesday in Fort Smith and Fayetteville and one of the warrants was for a
lieutenant commander of the Militia of Washington County, Hollis "Wayne"
Fincher, of 16085 East Black Oak Road.

"We assisted ATF and several other agencies in arresting Fincher. I don't
believe he has a criminal history with us. That's all I can tell you," Reynolds

Washington County Sheriff Tim Helder said he couldn't comment on the arrest or

Fincher was arrested without incident at his residence, according to an ATF news

Senior ATF Special Agent Austin R. Banks said he was restricted to releasing
anything beyond the news release. He did confirm Fincher has no criminal record
and he was the only person arrested.

The arrest and search warrants were the result of an eight-month investigation
relating to the unlawful manufacture, possession and transfer of machine guns,
Banks said.

A machine gun that can fire 550 rounds a minute and assorted 9 mm Sten
submachine guns are stored in the Washington County militia's concrete and steel
vault, according to information gathered from an interview conducted by The
Morning News in March. Each weapon is stamped with the word "non-commercial" to
prove the group holds the arms for militia purchases only and not for trade or

Owners of automatic weapons must pay $200 to license each automatic weapon they
own. Militia members avoided that by re-building government-destroyed automatic
weapons for their own use, Paul Smith, militia commander said in March.

Fincher said in the March interview he believes Americans should proudly uphold
the right to bear arms, stand up for land rights and not always accept the
federal government as the supreme law of the land.

"What we've got to do today is hold our ground," Fincher said in March.

According to the militia's Web site HTTP:// , the
headquarters is down the road from Fincher's address at 15566 E. Black Oak Road.
The militia was formed July 4, 1994.

Thirteen additional federal search warrants were executed at different places in
the Fort Smith-Fayetteville area, Banks said. The warrants are under seal at the
direction of the U.S. Attorney for the Western Judicial District of Arkansas.
All evidence seized during the execution of the warrants will be submitted to
the U.S. Attorney's Office for the preparation of indictments in this

ATF, FBI, Washington County Sheriff's Department, Fayetteville Police
Department, Springdale Police Department, Arkansas State Police, Arkansas State
Bomb Squad and the Madison County Sheriff's Department participated in the

The investigation was conducted under Project Safe Neighborhoods ,
the U.S. Department of Justice initiative that combines federal, state and local
resources to combat violent gun crime. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the
Western District of Arkansas will prosecute the case.


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