#BLM Pulls Workers From Gold Butte After Shots Fired Near Surveyors

Posted: June 12, 2015 in Culture

The Bureau of Land Management has told its employees and contractors to stay out of a disputed swath of public land in northeastern Clark County after shots were fired near a survey crew’s camp last week.

No one was injured, but the three surveyors from the Nevada-based Great Basin Institute packed their gear in the dark and quickly left the area after they said someone fired three shots from a nearby road and then returned an hour later to fire three more.

The agency later directed that “all personnel and contractors are not to work in the Gold Butte area at this time,” said Great Basin Institute co-founder and executive director Jerry Keir, reading from the incident report submitted by his survey team.

A three-person crew was collecting data on springs, seeps and cattle troughs for a BLM inventory of the Gold Butte area. They were scheduled to spend a week in the area about 100 miles northeast of Las Vegas, but at the end of their first day along the western slope of the Virgin Mountains they were approached by two men in a vehicle who asked them what they were doing.

The surveyors said the men identified themselves as ranchers and were “very cordial.”

A few hours later, shortly after the surveyors climbed into their tents for the night at about 9 p.m., they heard a vehicle on the road and saw its headlights shining on their camp. That’s when the first shots were fired.

They told Metro and the FBI those shots and the second series an hour later came from roughly a third of a mile away from their campsite.

“To my knowledge they weren’t shot at, but there was gunfire in the vicinity so they decided they should leave,” said Terry Christopher, the environmental research institute’s associate director in Southern Nevada.

Full Story @ [Las Vegas Review-Journal]

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