HOUSTON (AP) -- Timothy McVeigh has written a letter to the Houston Chronicle stating unequivocally there was never a John Doe No. 2 who helped him blow up the Oklahoma City federal building.
McVeigh's former attorney Stephen Jones has alleged McVeigh was one of a group of conspirators in the April 19, 1995, bombing that killed 168 people.
"Jones has been thoroughly discredited, so I'm not going to break a sweat refuting his outlandish claims point-by-point," McVeigh wrote in the letter mailed from the federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind. "The truth is on my side."
McVeigh said in the book "American Terrorist: Timothy McVeigh & The Oklahoma City Bombing," that convicted co-conspirator Terry Nichols helped mix the fertilizer bomb, but claimed he alone carried out the bombing.
"Does anyone honestly believe that if there was a John Doe 2 (there is not), that Stephen Jones would still be alive? ... Think about it," McVeigh wrote.
McVeigh's single-page letter was handwritten May 2, a week before the government's decision to delay his execution so McVeigh's attorneys could examine thousands of FBI documents related to the bombing.
Defense attorney Robert Nigh of Tulsa told the newspaper that he could not comment on McVeigh's statement or on whether it would hamper any efforts to seek a new trial based on the newly revealed evidence.
"Well, I bet he wishes now he'd followed my advice and kept his mouth shut," Jones told the newspaper. "And I bet he wishes he'd followed (appellate attorney) Nathan Chambers' advice and not dismissed those appeals."
McVeigh, 33, was scheduled to die Wednesday for the bombing. The execution has been delayed until June 11.
The search for John Doe No. 2 began when the FBI released sketches of two men it believed had rented the truck that blew up outside the federal building, based on descriptions from a worker in the rental shop.
John Doe No. 1 was Timothy McVeigh, investigators said. The heavyset John Doe No. 2 was eventually identified by authorities as an Army private who had been in the rental shop the day after McVeigh. The man was cleared by the FBI of involvement in the bombing.
Nichols has contended that John Doe No. 2 was real and that his existence sheds doubt on Nichols' purported role in the bombing. He is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to consider whether the newly released FBI documents could cast doubt on his guilt.
A constitutional law expert said McVeigh effectively ambushed his attorneys' possible appeals with this statement to the newspaper.
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