Bank blast kills police officer in Oregon | MassCops

Bank blast kills police officer in Oregon

Discussion in 'Line of Duty Death News' started by kwflatbed, Dec 13, 2008.

  1. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

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    Sat Dec 13, 1:36 AM ET

    Marion County Sheriff Russ Isham, left, makes remarks as Lt. Gregg Hastings of the Oregon State Police looks on during a news briefing concerning a bank bombing Friday, Dec. 12, 2008, in Woodburn, Ore. West Coast Bank was the location where Oregon State Police said a bomb detonated after police arrived to inspect a suspicious device. The Oregon State Police said there were 'serious injuries.' Newspaper reports said at least one bomb technician and two bank employees were hurt in the Friday night blast (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

    WOODBURN, Ore. -- A bomb exploded inside a bank here late Friday afternoon, killing a police officer who arrived to check on a suspicious object and seriously injuring two others.
    A spokesman for the Oregon State Police, Lt. Gregg Hastings, said a Woodburn police officer died. He did not identify him.
    He also said the blast seriously injured the Woodburn police chief and a bomb technician with the Oregon State Police.
    The police chief, Scott Russell, was in surgery at a Portland hospital late Friday, said a hospital spokeswoman. Hastings said Russell was in stable condition.
    Bank President and CEO Bob Sznewajs told The Associated Press that some bank employees might have been injured by flying glass but that none was seriously hurt.
    Before the detonation, a Wells Fargo Bank branch nearby got a call that was "a potential bomb threat" but police searched and found nothing, Sznewajs told The AP.
    He said his bank then got a call "from an unknown person saying that we should look for one as well. We called authorities, but they looked and found nothing."
    Sznewajs said one employee saw a device in the bushes near the bank and called the authorities. "We looked at it and evacuated the branch and sent people away," he said.
    Authorities decided to move the device inside the branch, apparently scanned it, and then it went off, he said.
    Sznewajs said he did not know if the bomb went off on its own or as a result of the technicians' investigation.
    The Marion County Sheriff's Department said the device detonated at 5:24 p.m. The bank branch, which employs 3-5 people, normally closes at 6 p.m.
    Sznewajs said he knew of no previous threats against the bank.
    Late Friday night, federal agents were talking with security people at the bank about any information they may have, Sznewajs said.
    Woodburn is an agricultural town south of Portland.


    http://www1.whdh.com/news/articles/national/BO98371/
     
  2. MCADPD24

    MCADPD24 MassCops Member

    RIP brother
     
  3. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Suspect Arrested in Oregon Bank Bombing

    By STEVEN DUBOIS
    Associated Press Writer

    PORTLAND, Ore. --
    Many questions remain in a bombing that killed two officers and critically injured a police chief at an Oregon bank. But authorities think they have solved the most important one.
    Authorities arrested a suspect late Sunday, just hours after releasing surveillance photos of a "person of interest," according to Sheriff Russ Isham of Marion County.
    Isham and Deputy District Attorney Courtland Geyer declined to release the suspect's name, saying it would jeopardize the integrity of the investigation and the safety of officers still working the case.
    "We do believe the person responsible for the bombing is in custody," said Geyer, sidestepping the question of whether the alleged bomber had accomplices.
    The arrest was made in Salem, roughly 20 miles south of where the explosion occurred - the small city of Woodburn. The name of the suspect and the list of charges will be released by late Monday afternoon, Geyer said.
    It's unknown if a possible motive will also be revealed.
    Geyer wouldn't disclose if the man in the photos, apparently taken with a security camera, is the same person in custody. The man in the pictures has an average build and appears to be in his 30s. He has a beard and dark hair.
    Geyer also wouldn't say if a tip led to the break in the case or provide the exact location of the arrest.
    Earlier Sunday, Isham said cell phones and items that might have been used to make the bomb were bought in the central Oregon city of Bend last month. Authorities would not elaborate on how cell phones might have been used. Bombers sometimes use cell phone signals to remotely detonate explosives.
    Geyer said revealing anything about the "manner and build" of the bomb would hurt the investigation.
    Isham said the man in the surveillance photos may be skilled in welding and electronics, suggesting the device might have been somewhat sophisticated.
    The manager of a Woodburn branch of West Coast Bank found the device Friday after a call about a bomb threat to a nearby Wells Fargo bank branch that turned up a harmless device. The bomb was found outside, but the officers took the bomb into the bank, where it exploded.
    Lt. Sheila Lorance of the Marion County Sheriff's Office, the lead agency in the case, did not have an explanation Sunday for why the officers took the bomb into the bank.
    Woodburn Police Chief Scott Russell remained in stable but critical condition Sunday at a Portland hospital as a result of the blast that killed Woodburn police Capt. Tom Tennant and Oregon State Police Senior Trooper William Hakim.
    Robert Sznewajs, the CEO of West Coast Bank, said Sunday that the bank planned to establish a fund for the families of the law enforcement officers.


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  4. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Ore. bank bombing suspect charged with murder

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    This photo provided by Marion County Sheriff's Office shows Joshua A. Turnidge. Authorities have identified Turnidge as the man arrested in the bombing of an Oregon bank and say he is accused of murder. Authorities say he is the man shown in surveillance photographs released Sunday. (AP Photo)

    By Ryan Kost
    Associated Press
    SALEM, Ore. — A former Navy serviceman was charged with murder and other crimes after a bomb explosion at a bank that killed two law enforcers and critically injured a third, officials said Monday.
    Joshua A. Turnidge, 32, was arrested Sunday after police released surveillance photographs of him, the Marion County district attorney's office said. Officials did not identify him until Monday.
    Court officials didn't know Monday whether Turnidge had an attorney. He is to be arraigned Tuesday.
    The announcement didn't say what led officers to Turnidge but said it wasn't the "direct result" of a tip from the public. Investigators have not disclosed information about a motive.
    Turnidge was arrested in Salem, where he lives, about 20 miles south of Woodburn, where the bomb exploded Friday at a West Coast Bank branch office.
    He also faces charges of manufacturing and possession of a dangerous device, assault, and conspiracy, prosecutors said.
    The manager of the bank branch found the device Friday after a call about a bomb threat to a nearby Wells Fargo bank turned up a harmless device. The bomb at West Coast was found outside, but officers took it inside, where it exploded. Investigators have said they do not know why the bomb was taken inside.
    Woodburn Police Chief Scott Russell was still in critical condition Monday at a Portland hospital as a result of the blast, which killed Woodburn police Capt. Tom Tennant and Oregon State Police Senior Trooper William Hakim, a bomb disposal technician.
    Public records show that Turnidge is divorced, served at Naval Station Great Lakes in Illinois and worked in Salem as a steelworker as recently as December 2006. He has lived in various Oregon communities, as well as in Nevada and Washington state.
    Court records show no serious offenses in Oregon, mainly traffic violations such as driving without a seat belt.
    His landlord, Randy Jacobsen of Keizer, said he met Turnidge about a month ago and agreed to let him move into the Salem house at a reduced rate in exchange for helping with renovation work.
    Jacobsen said he believed Turnidge was self-employed and once owned a business that involved erecting cell phone towers.
    Investigators say cell phones and items that might have been used to make the bomb were bought last month in the central Oregon city of Bend but have not said how phones might have been used in the attack.
    "We're still in shock," Jacobsen said. "I don't know if he's guilty or not. If he is, I'd be shocked."
    Before becoming Jacobsen's tenant, neighbors said, Turnidge recently lived for about a month in north Salem with a woman and a girl, in a camper trailer at the home of the woman's mother, and hoped to start a business using cooking oil to fuel cars.
    Neighbor Ray Daniel said the three kept to themselves and had recently experienced a death in the family.
    "It's been a tough year for the family," Daniel said.
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  5. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Documents: Fallen Oregon Officers Thought Bomb Was Hoax

    The Associated Press



    SALEM, Ore. --

    Two law enforcement officers killed in a bank bombing last week believed the device was a hoax and were trying to open it when it exploded, according to court documents released on Tuesday.
    A probable cause statement in the case of bombing suspect Joshua Turnidge says a state trooper inspected and X-rayed a green metal box found Friday outside the West Coast Bank building in Woodburn.
    The document says Oregon State Police Senior Trooper William Hakim, a bomb disposal technician, was confident it was a hoax device, so he took it inside.
    The statement says a bank employee saw Hakim trying to open it while Woodburn Capt. Tom Tennant held it, and then it exploded.
    Hakim and Tennant were killed. Woodburn Police Chief Scott Russell was critically injured - he has lost his right leg from the knee down and his left leg was mutilated, according to the statement. The bank employee was treated at Salem Hospital and released.
    According to the statement, at 10:19 a.m. Friday a man called in a bomb threat to the Wells Fargo Bank in Woodburn, which is close to the West Coast Bank branch. The man said "if 'they' didn't leave the building, all of them would die," the court document states.
    The man also said a cell phone would be found next to a garbage can, and that he would give further instructions on the cell phone.
    Local police officers arrived at the Wells Fargo building and spotted a cell phone on top of what appeared to be a package. Hakim and an FBI bomb technician also arrived, examined the package and cell phone, and determined it was a hoax device.
    Woodburn police searched the area around the two banks for other devices, and a green metal box was spotted next to the West Coast Bank building.
    Hakim, Tennant and Russell went to the West Coast Bank as well. After Hakim inspected and X-rayed the green box, he said he was confident it was a "hoax device" and that it could be "taken apart to be placed into evidence."
    Hakim brought the green box into the bank to work on it, with help from Tennant and Russell, and it detonated.
    The court document says Turnidge was seen on a store's surveillance video walking to his father's pickup truck after buying airtime for the cell phone that was found at the Wells Fargo. The airtime was purchased a day before the bombing.
    Investigators and prosecutors have refused to talk about a possible motive.
    Turnidge appeared in court Tuesday morning for the first time. He was assigned a court-appointed attorney and did not enter a plea to charges that include murder and making a dangerous device. His next scheduled court date is Dec. 26.


    [​IMG]Wire Service
     
  6. 7costanza

    7costanza Supporting Member

    Im betting he wanted to exact some sort of revenge on the bank.maybe he was about to have his house foreclosed...something like that.. very sad for the Officers that got killed.
     
  7. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Father of Oregon Bank Bombing Suspect also Charged


    The Associated Press



    SALEM, Ore. --

    The investigation into a bombing that killed two Oregon law enforcement officers at a small-town bank has narrowed to a father-son tandem.
    Two days after police arrested Joshua Turnidge, officers went to a farm in the rural community of Jefferson and took the man's father, 57-year-old Bruce Turnidge, into custody. Officers were soon walking shoulder-to-shoulder in the farm's fields, looking for evidence.
    Officials have yet to describe what specific actions the father allegedly carried out in Friday's bombing of a Woodburn bank, but said late Tuesday his role wasn't minor.
    "There was sufficient evidence for him to be charged with all the same offenses as his son," said Courtland Geyer, the deputy district attorney in Marion County. Those charges include murder, attempted murder, assault and the manufacture and possession of a destructive device.
    Geyer declined to reveal what authorities think motivated the men to allegedly build a bomb and place it outside a branch of West Coast Bank. Documents released Tuesday as part of Joshua Turnidge's arraignment described what happened, but not why.
    Joshua Turnidge, 32, did not enter a plea Tuesday and showed little emotion when hearing the charges that carry a potential death penalty.
    "My client is clear-headed," said Turnidge's court-appointed attorney, Steven Krasik of Salem. "He was surprised to be arrested. And he is optimistic that he will be cleared of all these charges."
    The blast killed a State Police bomb technician, Senior Trooper William Hakim, and a Woodburn officer, Capt. Tom Tennant. It critically injured Woodburn Police Chief Scott Russell; a probable cause statement said Russell lost his right leg from the knee down and his left leg was mutilated.
    Authorities said that on Friday morning, a man called in a bomb threat to the Wells Fargo Bank in Woodburn, which is next door to the West Coast Bank branch. The voice warned those inside they would die if they didn't leave the building.
    The man also said that a cell phone would be found next to a garbage can, and that he would give further instructions on it. The man also said he would be calling the West Coast Bank.
    Police officers arrived at the Wells Fargo building, opened a garbage bin and spotted a cell phone on top of what appeared to be a package. Hakim and an FBI bomb technician were called. They examined the package and cell phone and determined the package was a hoax device.
    Woodburn police searched the area around the two banks for other devices, and a green metal box was spotted next to the West Coast Bank building.
    Hakim, Tennant and Russell arrived at the West Coast Bank. After Hakim inspected and X-rayed the green box, he said he was "confident that it was a hoax device and that it could be taken apart to be placed into evidence."
    The statement said a bank employee saw Hakim trying to open the box while Tennant held it when the bomb exploded. The bank employee was treated at a hospital and released.
    The father-and-son duo have a record of traffic and vehicle law violations, but no record of serious offenses in Oregon. The elder Turnidge is scheduled to be arraigned Thursday morning.


    [​IMG]Wire Service
     
  8. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Bomb material found in Ore. suspect's home


    By Brad Cain
    The Associated Press
    SALEM, Ore. — Authorities found bomb-making material at the rural home of a man accused along with his son of killing two law enforcement officers in an explosion at a bank, according to a court document released Thursday.
    Some of the material found at Bruce Turnidge's home matched that used in the bomb that killed the officers and critically injured a third Dec. 12, the probable cause statement said. It also said some of the material was found in a nearby stream, with fresh foot and tire tracks leading to it.
    The document said the search turned up two tubes of the explosive Tovex, which manufacturer Web sites say is a replacement for dynamite used in mining and excavating. Bruce Turnidge in the past has worked as an excavator.
    Other items turned up in a search of Turnidge's home and shop and the nearby stream were angle iron, sheet metal, metal grating, bolts, wiring and plywood with green spray paint matching the color of a metal box containing the bomb that exploded at the West Coast Bank in Woodburn, the document said. Several of the items matched materials used in the bomb, the document said, but aside from the paint it did not say which items matched.
    The document said U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents believed "some type of black or smokeless powder was used in the fabrication" of the West Coast Bank bomb.
    State Police bomb technician William Hakim and Woodburn police Capt. Tom Tennant were killed in the blast. Woodburn police Chief Scott Russell lost a leg and is listed in critical condition.
    Turnidge, who appeared in court for the first time Thursday, is charged with his son, Joshua, who appeared in court Tuesday. A lawyer for Bruce Turnidge, John Storkel, declined to comment after the court appearance.
    Neither the 57-year-old father nor his 32-year-old son has entered a plea to charges that include aggravated murder; both now have court-appointed attorneys, are being held without bail, and are to return to court Dec. 26.
    Police have so far refused to divulge a possible motive, or to say whether they think the elder Turnidge or his son planned the bombing.
    "It would not be helpful to the investigation to reveal sensitive details, such as motive, that could arguably color any of the information that we gather at this point," Deputy District Attorney Courtland Geyer said Thursday.
    A caller had threatened a bank next door to the West Coast Bank the day of the bombing. Investigators found a package they determined to be a hoax explosive device at that bank, then found the green box as they continued searching the area.
    Hakim concluded the green box also was a hoax after inspecting and X-raying it. A bank employee reported seeing Hakim trying to open the box while Tennant held it when the bomb exploded.
    Joshua Turnidge, a former Navy serviceman, was arrested Sunday at his home in Salem; his father was arrested Tuesday near Jefferson about 15 miles south, the day the rented home was searched.
    An officer said in the document released Thursday that he overheard Joshua's girlfriend telling Bruce Turnidge on the telephone Sunday that officers had inquired about welding equipment and barrels.
    When they arrived at the farm home Sunday night, Bruce Turnidge was gone, and his wife said he had gone for a walk on what officers noted was a "cold, dark, snowy" night, the document said.
    He returned "several hours later, offering no explanation for his sudden disappearance," it said.
    The search on Tuesday also turned up a badly burned laptop computer, welding machinery and a blasting cap, the document said.
    Records show that Bruce Turnidge accumulated debt after having to pay tens of thousands of dollars over the years for various claims related to his previous businesses, including money owed to a bank - neither the one that was bombed nor one that was threatened the same day.
    Investigators were not saying whether they think his financial situation had anything to do with the bombing.



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