Chronology of the Oklahoma City bombing case

Crime, Law and JusticeTrials and ArbitrationJustice SystemCrimeDeathJails and PrisonsHomicide

1995

April 19 -- Bomb rips through Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building at 9:02 a.m. Timothy McVeigh arrested 90 minutes later for a missing license plate near Billings, Okla., about 78 miles north of Oklahoma City. Terry Nichols is at home in Herington, Kan.

April 20 -- Authorities release sketches of suspects John Doe No. 1 and John Doe No. 2.

April 21 -- Federal authorities arrest McVeigh, who resembles John Doe No. 1, hours before he was expected to make bail on weapons charge. Nichols surrenders after learning police are looking for him.

June 14 -- Authorities acknowledge John Doe No. 2 is innocent Army private from Fort Riley, Kan.

Aug. 11 -- Grand jury indicts McVeigh and Nichols on murder and conspiracy charges.

Oct. 20 -- Attorney General Janet Reno authorizes prosecutors to seek death penalty.

1996

Feb. 20 -- U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch moves case to Denver, ruling that McVeigh and Nichols have been ``demonized'' by media coverage in Oklahoma.

Oct. 25 -- Matsch orders McVeigh and Nichols to be tried separately, ruling their rights could be compromised by joint trial.

1997

April 24 -- Opening statements begin in McVeigh's trial.

June 2 -- Jury convicts McVeigh on all 11 counts.

June 13 -- Jury condemns McVeigh to die by injection.

Aug. 14 -- McVeigh sentenced to death, tells the judge the government ``teaches the people by its example.''

Nov. 3 -- Opening statements begin in Nichols' trial.

Dec. 23 -- Nichols convicted of conspiracy and involuntary manslaughter, acquitted of weapons and explosives charges.

1998

Jan. 7 -- Jury deadlocks during penalty phase for Nichols, leaving Matsch to determine sentence.

May 27 -- Michael Fortier, government's star witness against McVeigh and Nichols, sentenced to 12 years in prison for not warning authorities about the plot.

June 4 -- Matsch, calling Nichols an ``enemy of the Constitution,'' sentences him to life in prison without parole.

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