Searching For John Doe No. 2

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DENVER: After investigators could not turn up the second man that some witnesses had associated with the Oklahoma City bombing, the FBI concluded that "John Doe No. 2" simply didn't exist. But attorney Michael Tigar opened his defense of Terry Nichols by saying that John Doe No. 2 in fact did exist — and helped Timothy McVeigh plan and execute the bombing.

As evidence, Tigar cited testimony by employees of Elliott’s Body Shop in Junction City, Kansas, who rented the Ryder truck used in the bombing by McVeigh. They provided a description of a dark skinned muscular white male who accompanied him. A maid at the Dreamland Motel, where McVeigh stayed in Junction City prior to the bombing, saw a man fitting that description near a Ryder Truck. The motel owner said McVeigh had a male guest late one evening. Tigar plans to call witnesses who will testify they saw John Doe No. 2 with McVeigh before the bombing.

In the coming weeks, Tigar will try to convince jurors the FBI ignored evidence about John Doe No. 2 and was too quick to blame his client. Tigar has already accused McVeigh's pal and government witness Michael Fortier of having more involvement than his client. He is also expected to repeat conspiracy theories that the government had prior knowledge of the bombing and failed to stop it. Even as the defense lawyer tries to free his client, a grand jury in Oklahoma City is questioning witnesses on the same subjects, hoping to find other co-conspirators.