Colorado

Apr 20, 2010 1:23 PM by Jeannette Hynes

McVeigh's attorney reflects on OKC bombing

On the 15th anniversary of the Oklahoma City Bombing, MSNBC aired audio recordings of interviews with Timothy McVeigh that have never been heard in public before.

McVeigh's voice was recorded in 1999 while he was at the Supermax federal prison in Florence by reporter and author Lou Michael.  The recordings reveal McVeigh's confession to the bombing.

He describes the moments just before the blast: 

"I then pulled up to the light, which was red at the time, and lit the main fuse, which was approximately two minutes. I pulled up to the building, and stepped out and walked across the street.  The blast went off, and literally I was lifted off the ground."

Dennis Hartley was McVeigh's attorney after he was convicted.  Hartley says looking back, he wouldn't have changed the way he handled McVeigh's case.

"My relationship could get strained with Tim.  I probably would have tried to make that better, but that is real hindsight.  I don't know if I could have," says Hartley.

On those chilling tapes, McVeigh talks about the 19 children younger than the age of six who died in the blast: 

"You're not the first mother to lose a kid. You're not the first grandparent to lose a granddaughter or a grandson. Get over it."   

"It really makes you sad.  I mean, kids.  To have someone refer to those children as collateral damage really makes my blood boil.  That's how he referred to them," says Hartley.

Hartley has been practicing law in Colorado Springs for 32 years, and he's seen the way people view the government change over time.  He says he sees people now who have political and personal views like McVeigh.

"I think right now it's an absolute hate for the government, and that's strong, but it is.  And they're overreaching and imposing more government on a people that can't stand any more government," says Hartley.

Harley says, unlike McVeigh, he feels this movement will go to the ballot box, rather than resort to a violent act, to take a stance on their position.

 

 

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