Playboy Magazine says papers show McVeigh confessed
March 11, 1997
(CNN) -- Playboy Magazine Tuesday published an article on the Internet that it said corroborated a Dallas Morning News report that Oklahoma City bombing suspect Timothy McVeigh admitted planting the April 19, 1995, bomb that killed 168 people.
The article said McVeigh insisted he was alone when he drove a truck bomb to the side of the Alfred P. Murrah building in downtown Oklahoma City, but that his attorneys were skeptical and he failed lie detector tests about the issue.
The writer, Ben Fenwick, said in the article that the admissions attributed to McVeigh were based on documents compiled by his defense team.
The article did not include any direct quotes from McVeigh or the purported documents. Instead, it was written as a third-person narrative.
A number of the details were noticeably different from the evidence in the case, as gathered by the FBI. For instance, the article said McVeigh left the key in the ignition of the bomb truck. However, the truck key was actually recovered in a parking lot half a block away where McVeigh is thought to have hidden his getaway car.
The story described in detail the contents of the truck bomb, including "80 or more 50-pound bags of fertilizer and 55-gallon barrels of nitromethane racing fuel" and the timed detonators that McVeigh said were used to explode it.
It said he jogged from the scene before the bomb went off, but was still close enough to be thrown up against a wall by the blast.
McVeigh is awaiting trial in Denver for the bombing. His attorney Stephen Jones was not available for comment, but Jones' office issued a written statement that did not say anything about whether the article was accurate and whether it was indeed based on defense documents.
Instead, the statement said: "These escalating reports of alleged statements by Mr. McVeigh are corrupting the heart of the jury system. The American ideals of justice are being held hostage to sensationalism." It said the issues should be left to the jury to decide.
The Dallas paper story, also published first on the Internet on February 28, quoted confidential defense documents. Jones said later that those documents were made up as a ploy to flush out a witness suspected of involvement in the bombing. He accused the newspaper of stealing the documents, a charge the Morning News denied.
The Playboy article said it believed its documents are different from those reported in the Dallas paper, "yet they appear to corroborate basic facts in the News story."
Reuters contributed to this report.
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