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The Okalahoma City Bombing

English Period 6
4/5/04
Extra Credit
On April 19th 1995, in Okalahoma City, a large yellow Ryder truck pulled
into the parking lot of the Alfred P. Murrah building. The driver casually
stepped out and walked away from the truck at about 8:58. At around 9:02
the 4,000 pound cargo blew up the Alfred P. Murrah building to shreds.

Thus, the worst act of terrorism the U.S had seen before the September 11th
hijackings.

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The sirens blasted as the Alfred P. Murrah building came crumbling down.

Yet the twenty-seven year old responsible for the bombing never actually
heard the sirens because he had earplugs on to protect him from the blast
that lifted pedestrians off of the street. Traffic signs and parking meters
flew through the air. Shattered glass flew like bullets.


Inside the building, survival depended on where you were located. Some
lucky people had left their usual posts, like to fetch coffee or to run
errands. While they were away their fellow workers were blown away. The
explosion caused a chain-reaction. The bottom floor, which was a daycare
center, was crushed when the top floors collapsed, killing all of the
children in the process. Rescue searchers frantically searched for
survivors. Sound devices helped rescue workers find Dana Bradley, a woman
who was buried alive. Her leg was trapped under a large piece of concrete.

The only way to free her was to amputate her leg. Since giving her
anesthetic could send her into a coma, they had to amputate her leg while
she was conscious. Her leg wasn’t the only thing she lost that day; she
lost her mother and her two young children.


Hundreds of acts of heroism would arrive through out the day. Homegrown
terrorism had arrived with a vengeance, and the terrorist was the kid next
door. And he was cruising away from the carnage down interstate 35.


Okalahoma Patrol Trooper Charles Hanger had received orders to head down
to the Alfred P. Murrah building. After two minutes pass, he receives
instructions to stay where he is. Hanger spots a beat up 1977 Mercury Grand
Marquis without a license plate. He pulled over the car. Timothy Mcveigh
was questioned by the trooper about his license plate. Mcveigh said that he
just purchased the car and he was waiting for the right forms and papers to
be mailed. The officer then noticed a bulge in Timothy Mcveigh’s jacket.

Mcveigh told the officer that it was a gun. The officer took his gun from
his holster and confiscated Mcveigh’s gun. Mcveigh was handcuffed and
placed in the officer’s car while he ran a computer check on his license
and the 9mm glock. Mcveigh’s license was not valid in Okalahoma and he was
arrested. At the jail Mcveigh was booked for four misdemeanors, unlawfully
carrying a weapon, transporting a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle,
failing to provide a license plate and failing to provide proof of
insurance.


The rear bumper of the Ryder truck was discovered and the license plate
was traced to the rental place that rented it. Robert Cling was the person
who rented the truck from the place. Robert Cling was an alias that Mcveigh
used to rent the Ryder truck. The FBI called the number that was on the
rental agreement. Ms. McGowan told the FBI that Mcveigh rented the truck
and parked it in the parking lot of the Alfred P. Murrah building earlier
that day. The license plate and the Police Charge Sheet matched Mcveigh to
the scene of the crime. The FBI had their man and time was running out for
Timothy Mcveigh.


The excitement intensified at the Oklahoma City command center. Cheers
of relief went up as the news that “We got him!” spread. Immediately,
agents were in choppers heading for the Noble County jail. Mcveigh was
waiting in the lobby for his turn to see the judge. Officers disconnected
the phones because they knew Mcveigh would try to contact a lawyer.

Officers then escorted McVeigh back to his cell. They told him the judge
was not ready for his case. Back in his cell, an inmate asked him if he was
the bomber. McVeigh ignored the question. All of the helicopters around the
jail house told citizens that a suspect was in custody for the bombings. A
large group of people began to gather outside of the jail house. McVeigh
was led to a room where FBI agent Floyd Zimms waited. Zimms told McVeigh
that he knew he had information about the bombings and he read him his
rights. McVeigh requested a bulletproof vest when he was to be brought
outside. He also requested a helicopter exit. Both were denied. Officers
led McVeigh outside. “Murderer! Baby Killer! Scumbag! was shouted by the
group of people outside of the jail house. A similar scene was taking place
in Herington, Kansas. Terry Nichols was driving to the police station to be
interviewed about the bombings. The news about someone being involved
spread around town. People gathered outside of the Herington jail house.

Suddenly, the realization dawned upon the U.S. Two ordinary looking men
committed this heinous act against humanity. Even worse, homegrown
terrorism was now a chilling reality.


Timothy McVeigh was sentenced to death for the bombing of the Alfred P.

Murrah building on April 19, 1995. His accomplish Terry Nichols was charged
12 years in a federal prison for not alerting authorities about the
bombing. McVeigh was sent to a special confinement cell for six years
awaiting his execution. On May 16th, 2001, Timothy McVeigh was executed by
lethal injection for his crime. McVeigh’s father was present for the
execution along with family members of the victims McVeigh killed.


Timothy McVeigh bombed the Alfred P. Murrah building because of the
unconstitutional acts by the government when dealing with the Davidian
Siege. Every person died in that siege. The building was laid to waste.

Outraged, McVeigh and, former army buddy, Terry Nichols devised a plan to
bomb the building where the government agents who worked on the Davidians
case resided. Hundreds were killed that day including dozens of children in
the daycare center that was right under the yellow Ryder truck that tore
through the seven story building. The Alfred P. Murrah building was torn
down and replaced with a field of chairs representing each and every person
that perished on April 19, 1995. Ironically, McVeigh’s request for his
execution to be broadcasted publicly around the world was denied. The
government officials told Timothy McVeigh that his request was
unconstitutional.

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