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DR#35: Cammo Dude Roster Article in Desert Rat #35

Cammo Dude Roster

by Glenn Campbell

At long last, after rattling our sabers all these months, we publish the names of Cammo Dudes who were deputized by the Lincoln County Sheriff's Dept., as obtained from public records. In the course of our investigation, we also turned up the "Pittman Station" mentioned in the security manual and a current business office for Area 51 in Las Vegas.

Here are the Cammo Dudes who were once deputized as public servants in Lincoln County. An explanation of where this information comes from follows.

[Note (6/97): A more complete version of this list can be found at this location.]

Lincoln County, Nevada
"Special Deputy Sheriffs" Revoked 8/24/94
Name Deputized Revoked Page Revoke Notary
Cain, Richard W. 6/25/91 12/1/93 242 102287 Padilla
Coulston, James Wayne 11/21/89 12/1/93 220 102299 Hughes
Countryman, John Richard 11/22/89 3/1/94 225 102292 Padilla
Deley, Thomas Louis 11/22/89 12/1/94 223 102298 Padilla
Dye, Michael Kevin 11/22/89 3/1/94 226 102293 Padilla
Fackrell, Howard S. 11/22/89 3/1/94 224 102290 Padilla
Filkins, Clorne 11/22/89 3/1/94 225 102294 Padilla
Goodman, Fox Roland 11/22/89 3/1/94 227 102297 Padilla
Howe, Robert Arthur 11/21/89 12/1/93 221 102300 Hughes
Hull, William J., Jr. 3/10/92 3/1/94 248 102289 Martin
Koranda, Thomas 3/10/92 12/1/93 249 102306 Hughes
Larson, Lars N. 11/21/89 3/1/94 221 102301 Hughes
Leach, Loren E. 11/22/89 3/1/94 227 102296 Padilla
Learned, Kenneth 3/10/92 3/1/94 248 102284 Martin
Linton, Richard John 11/21/89 12/1/93 222 102302 Hughes
McFarland, Darrel Keith 11/21/89 3/1/94 222 102303 Hughes
O'Connor, Jonothan 3/10/92 3/1/93 250 102307 Hughes
Palay, David 3/10/92 3/1/94 250 102286 Martin
Roundtree, Lawrence 3/10/92 3/1/94 249 102285 Martin
Sides, Hubert E. 11/22/89 12/1/93 224 102291 Padilla
Taylor, Thomas E. 4/30/93 3/1/94 263 102288 Martin
Weathington, Jerry M. 11/22/89 3/1/94 226 102295 Padilla


Deputized is the date this person was deputized by Lincoln County Sheriff Dahl Bradfield. (All these people were deputized during his term, beginning shortly after he first took office.)

Revoked is the date Bradfield supposedly revoked their deputy status. However, all of these revocations were entered with the County Recorder on Aug. 24, 1994, so there is nothing to substantiate the earlier revocation dates except the statement of Bradfield.

Page is the page number in the book of Oaths of Office in the Lincoln County Recorders Office. (The number reflects the order in which the original deputizations took place.)

Revoke is the County Recorder's document number for the revocation of the deputy status.

Notary is the name of the notary public who swore out the original deputization. Below are the full names of each notary as show on the deputizations. All of these notaries are unknown to the staff at the Lincoln County Recorder's Office. It turns out, all are Clark County notaries. We called the Clark County Clerk's office for the address and contact information for each. The clerk noted that the record for each notary bore an endorsement "DET AFFTC" (see discussion below).

Path of Investigation

In the late evening of Aug. 28, 1993, when I and several companions were camping near Freedom Ridge, we were awoken by Lincoln County Sheriff's Deputy Keith Bowman accompanied by a Cammo Dude. They asked us for our ID, but we declined to give it until the Cammo Dude showed us his. To our surprise, he took out an ID card and showed it to us. The card said he was a sworn and "compensated" deputy of the Lincoln County Sheriff's Department. Unfortunately, we were still new at the game and did not copy down the Dude's name printed on the card.

Thereafter, I began to make noise about the Sheriff's Department deputizing members of this unaccountable private security force, and I threatened to make it a campaign issue when Bradfield was up for reelection the following year. I learned later from a unconfirmed source that the deputization program had ended in the summer of 1994, with hints of panic, because of fears it would become an issue in the election. The source also indicated that the involvement of the Sheriff's Department with Area 51 went far beyond deputization and included the maintenance of Sheriff's Department vehicles at the base. A separate rumor later said there were still two county deputies with security clearances.

I had assumed that the deputizations were secret, like everything else taking place between the Sheriff's Department and Cammo Dudes. My attempts to obtain information from the Sheriff's Dept. about this relationship had always been fruitless, as the Sheriff and D.A. never respond to my requests or answer my questions. It turns out, though, that the deputizations were public records and have always been available; I just never knew where to look.

In March 1996, I happened to ask the Lincoln County Recorder whether deputizations were filed in her office. She directed me to a book of Oaths of Office for all county officers. This contains not only deputies but the oaths for all county officers filed in chronological order. For each oath, there is also a section below it for the eventual revocation. Revocations indicate the date that the officer was expressly removed from his duties.

In the front of this book is an alphabetical index, so I looked up the name of one person who I knew was a Cammo Dude. Sure enough, he had been deputized. More interestingly, I found that his deputy status had been revoked on Aug. 24, 1994, about the time that the source had predicted. Browsing through the index, I found that there had been a sort of "Saturday Night Massacre," with some 24 deputies recorded as losing their commissions on that date. For reasons I give below, I can assert with high confidence that at least 22 of these are Cammo Dudes--i.e. security officers associated with Area 51.

Revocations are relatively rare in Lincoln County because even when an officer leaves his duties, their oaths of office are usually not revoked. It is a formality that is rarely bothered with, even when a county officer quits his job and moves away. In the entire decade of 1986 were 1996, there were only 29 revocations recorded in Lincoln County. 24 of these were the mass purge of deputies recorded on Aug. 24, 1994. This situation was unusual enough that the deputy recorder clearly remembers Sheriff Bradfield himself delivering the stack of revocation sheets to her.


This list of Cammo Dudes includes the names of several that I knew of before but that I could not previously confirm were deputies. Some names came from confidential sources, but two of these people are recorded on non-secret documents: Lars Larson and Thomas Taylor. Lars Larson, whose name at first I suspected was a joke, had signed a form, "Order Not to Enter or Reenter a Military Reservation," given to a friend of mine who wandered across the line in 1993. This form appears in my Area 51 Viewer's Guide. Although I had X-ed out the name in my book (for reasons that are now moot), you can still make out "Lars Larson" under the X's.

Thomas Taylor is the Air Force "Chief of Security" who approves the invoices from the Sheriff's Department to the Air Force for their annual service contract.

I know the rest of the names above are not local deputies because they never appeared before any notary in the Lincoln County Courthouse, as virtually all other county officers and Sheriff's Deputies do. Instead, these deputies were sworn before those three out-of-county notaries: Padilla, Hughes and Martin. No other known county officers appeared before these notaries, and no one in the Recorder's Office knew who the notaries were.

The Lincoln County Sheriff's Department might possibly deputize out-of-county officers for special situations, like the transport of prisoners between counties or for law enforcement in remote areas where the other county's officers are closer, but in all such cases I have reviewed, the deputization is sworn before a Lincoln County notary. The use of Clark County notaries suggests that the above deputies have never set foot in the county seat.

Because these three notaries were used only to deputize cammo dudes, their names became a red flag to me. I have begun a review of other oath-of-office records that were sworn by these notaries. Although my review is not yet complete, it has already yielded these two deputies who have not been revoked. In other words, the Lincoln County Sheriff's Dept. still has at least these two active deputies on the Cammo Dude Force.

"Special Deputy Sheriffs" Never Revoked
Name Deputized Page Notary
Armstrong, Robert R. 3/31/92 251 Martin
Domkoski, Donald R. 3/31/92 251 Martin

There were two other deputies revoked in the great purge of 8/24/96, but there is no evidence, apart from the date of revocation, that these are Cammo Dudes. For one thing, they both actually appeared at the courthouse for the swearing in, which is not the M.O. for Cammo Dudes. Also the dates of deputization do not match the initiation dates of the Cammo Dudes above. Although I will have to look into it further, my guess is that these were legitimate but inactive out-of-county deputies thrown into the pot by the Sheriff to make the rest seem legitimate, too. These revoked deputies were:

"Special Deputy Sheriffs" Revoked 8/24/94
Name Deputized Revoked Page Revoke # Notary
Bufford, Ricky L. 9/14/89 12/1/93 218 102305 Hogan
Herzog, Pamela Jean 10/26/89 12/1/93 219 102304 Wilkinson

(Herzog is called a "Special Deputy Sheriff" like the others, but Bufford is called a "Reserved Deputy." Notaries Hogan and Wilkinson are the Lincoln County Clerk and Deputy Clerk.)

Justification for Publishing Names

Living across the street from the Janet terminal in Las Vegas, I can in theory track down the identity of anyone working at Area 51--simply by following the worker home if necessary. I have resisted this temptation, though, because I am fighting for changes in policy and organizations, not targeting individuals. I do not want to violate the privacy of workers without a clear justification.

It is different when those workers are sworn public servants in County Government, where there is no legal provision for secrecy. When one chooses to take a public oath of office, one is automatically giving up one's anonymity. Part of becoming a public officer is being held accountable, in public and by name, for your actions in the line of duty. The fact that the oath is later revoked does not change that accountability. You continue to be publicly accountable for at least your past actions under that oath.

Thus I feel no discomfort about publishing the names of these deputies or any public information that may be related.

Further Investigation

Pittman Station

The address for the notary Padilla, whose commission has expired, was "Pittman Station, Henderson," a name I have been wondering about since it appeared in the Groom Lake security manual. In the security manual, when military personnel were challenged by the public, they were supposed to say they were assigned to this installation. The PO box for Padillo makes it clear that "Pittman Station" is not a military installation but only a post office substation. In other words, the security manual instructed these people to lie.

The address also provides a ZIP code for mail to Area 51: 89044. The ZIP code for Area 51 was an issue during the hazardous waste lawsuit, when a ZIP was demanded for the location being sued.

I called the main Henderson (Nevada) post office to find out where Pittman Station was located. The employee who answered the phone had never heard of it. I asked about the ZIP 89044, and they didn't know about that either. This ZIP code does not appear in official post office directories. Is it a "secret" ZIP code? I then called the postmaster's office at the main postal center in Las Vegas and learned from them that Pittman Station was a real post office substation on Boulder Highway but that both the substation and the ZIP code were decommissioned about "six or seven years ago."

My Theory: Pittman Station was once the main mail drop for Area 51; thus, military officers could claim they were "assigned" there. Although addresses there probably won't work now, if the ZIP 89044 is found on any older documents, this is a clue that Area 51 or another secret facility is involved.

1900 E. Flamingo

1900 East Flamingo Rd., Suite 266

The address for the notary Hughes still exists: 1900 East Flamingo Rd, Suite 266. I drove there and found a modern, nicely landscaped office complex, Greystone Park. As soon as I approached Suite #266, I knew I had found the right place: It was the only suite without a name on the door! [photo] A couple of employees came and went as I walked by, but none seemed to notice me. I heard the door being locked after an employee entered. I did not knock on the door myself, but I did push my business card under the door. On the front it said, "Area 51 Research Center"; on the back I wrote, "Let's do lunch!"

I went to the management office for the complex and also gave them my card. I asked if they could look up a tenant if I gave them a suite number. They said sure--except for that one. That tenant was one of "several" who had requested that their names not be given out. I was told that this office was a "secured area." Unlike most other offices in the complex during business hours, the door was always locked, and you had to knock to be let in. There was little reason to visit, however, since the tenant provided its own maintenance and janitorial services.

The judging from the outside, I'd say the suite was big enough for 15-20 people, maybe more. I believe this is a business office for some aspect of Area 51 operations, perhaps security or personnel management. This, for example, might be the place where support paperwork might be maintained, like routine employee records.

Telephone Numbers of Cammo Dudes

About a third of the Cammo Dudes on the list can be positively identified in the Las Vegas telephone directory. (Clorne Filkins is there, for example, and you know there can't be two of them.) Another third might be in the phone book, but the listing is too ambiguous to be sure (often an initial instead of a first name). Another Dude is found in the Lincoln County telephone directory. From this starting information, one could visit county clerk's office and dig up deeds, marriages and other public records and eventually a Dude's entire life history. That is not on my agenda, though.


The Clark County clerk I talked to said she thought all three notaries were "detectives." I asked why she thought that. She said each record was annotated by an acronym: DET-AFFTC.

I suppose DET-AFFTC could mean detective, but it also happens to stand for "Detachment-Air Force Flight Test Center." The Flight Test Center is the unit at Edwards Air Force Base that has long been a prime suspect as operator the Groom Lake base. Edwards, after all, is concerned primarily with aircraft testing, as is Groom.

Circumstantial evidence that the Groom Lake security force reports to Edwards AFB has come up many times in the past. For example, in a news story about five years ago, a sergeant at Nellis Air Force Base was accused of rape. A reporter who covered the trial (or court martial) said it was strongly indicated that the defendant had worked for security at Groom Lake, but documents presented during the proceedings indicated he was attached to the Testing Directorate at Edwards.

It is a fair conclusion, then, that the base at Groom Lake is a detachment of Edwards AFB, and the deputization records, combined with the notary records, provide a substantial link.

Sheriff in Hot Water

Prior to the Aug. 24 purge, there were at least 24 Cammo Dudes deputized, more than the entire paid staff of the Lincoln County Sheriff's Dept. The Sheriff now faces some hard questions if anyone in the county wishes to ask them.

  1. What was the purpose of these deputizations?

  2. Why were so many deputies assigned?

  3. What powers were the deputies given?

  4. Did these deputies ever make any arrests?

  5. Did the Sheriff swear in each of these deputies himself?

  6. Where did the swearing in take place?

  7. Has the Sheriff himself ever been to Area 51?

  8. Does Bradfield have a security clearance?

  9. At the time the deputies were sworn in, was it legal for an out-of-county to record it instead of the county clerk?

  10. How many Cammo Dude deputies are there now?

  11. Why was the County Commission not informed of this arrangement?

  12. Were Sheriff's vehicles repaired at Area 51?

  13. Whose idea was this deputization program?

  14. Did Bradfield accept legal advice from the Air Force?

  15. Who, in the Air Force, was Bradfield's contact for this program?

  16. Why did the deputizations start just after Bradfield took office?

  17. Who was legally liable for the actions of those revoked deputies? Who is liable for those two remaining deputies now?

  18. What other special arrangements were there between the Sheriff's Department and Area 51? What arrangements remain in place?

  19. If the deputizations were revoked on 3/1/94 and 12/1/93, why did the Sheriff wait 6 or 9 months to record these actions (on 8/24/94)? What is the significance of these two revocation dates?

  20. The ID of the Cammo Dude on Freedom Ridge said he was a "compensated" deputy. How were these deputies compensated?

Remember that state and county governments have no provision for secrecy the way the federal government does, so Bradfield may be compelled to answer.

What I am looking for now is any ongoing contact between the Air Force and Sheriff or D.A. This would suggest that the Air Force is trying to influence or offer advice to the Sheriff regarding this crisis. The Sheriff's primary responsibility is to the people of the county, not the Air Force, yet the Air Force seems to wield a lot of influence, enough to persuade Bradfield to take on these "ghost" deputies to begin with.

As a matter of fact, on March 27, I saw the D.A., Thomas Dill, lunching with two Air Force officers, Col. Jerry Carpenter and Lt. Col. Ron Walker of the 99th Range Group at Nellis. [More on them in a later article.] While the lunch was no doubt innocent, it may convey a bad impression as the secret arrangements between the Air Force, Sheriff and D.A. come under scrutiny. I suggest that the Air Force lay low, quit with the faulty advice and let Bradfield fight his own battles.

What Next?

Revealing the names of cammo dudes, the address of their secret business office and their link to the Sheriff's Department--all from public records--could have a cascade of unpredictable effects. For example, a Dude can now be subpoenaed in court cases, and if the Dude in any particular case refuses identify himself, they can all be brought into court. The notaries who swore in these guys might also be called to testify.

As soon as I left my business card at 1900 E. Flamingo, Suite 266, that site became a lot less secure. If you want to knock on the door and ask questions, I suggest doing it soon before the facility vanishes.

When perusing other documents, the appearance of any of those three notaries--Hughes, Martin or Padilla--or the ZIP code 89044 are red flags to indicate that the document could be related to Area 51.

Further Research

I leave it up to my readers to find ways to further investigate this data.

 Reader Comments Regarding "DR#35: Cammo Dude Roster" - Latest First
The Government of the US does confirm the base existing.

The latest I've heard the Government does confirm that the base at groom exist. Is that right or wrong? I need to know because I'm writing a report on the base.

-- Mr. Backlund ( ) 3/9/01 (#8)
response to "how can they deny the existance of Area 51"

They can deny the existance for two reasons; 1) they're "the Government," and 2) this way, they don't have to tell how much money is being spent there, or for what. Because of President Clinton's recent signing of legislation, the people at Area 51 can't be sued, either, being essentially exempt from ANY kind of legal or government oversight. Pretty good, huh?!?

-- Scott Gothard ( ) 9/10/99 (#7)
Search area51 or ex area 51 men for specialproject

If you're an area51 or an ex area51 please contact me. It's important. regards, Steph

-- Steph ( ) 8/10/99 (#6)

I have information on the supposed Area51. The information that most people obtain is not the total truth. I ahppen to know what is in area51 because my husband is stationed there at the moment.

-- Amilea Spence ( ) 12/16/98 (#5)
View 4 Other Comments

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Original Text Copyrighted © 1994-99 Glenn Campbell
PO Box 30303, Las Vegas, NV 89173

Note: The above page has been frozen as of Jan. 1, 2000. It is retained only for archive purposes. Broken links will not be repaired and some information may be out of date.

The former webmaster, Glenn Campbell, is still active at or @BadDalaiLama on Twitter

Created: 3/29/96
Last Modified: 6/18/96, 8/1/96 gc