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Lilian Kim: McVeigh was matter-of-fact

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December 28, 2000
Web posted at: 8:08 p.m. EST (0108 GMT)

CNN Newsource National Correspondent Lilian Kim was in the Denver courtroom that heard convicted mass murderer Timothy McVeigh's request Thursday to have his appeals dropped and be executed as soon as possible.

Q: Is there any indication why McVeigh asked for the speedy execution?

KIM: He has not explained the reason for his decision, and in court U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch didn't ask. Some legal analysts think that McVeigh wants to become a martyr for anti-government causes, but his lead attorney, Dennis Hartley, says that restrictive conditions in federal prison may have something to do with it.

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McVeigh is in solitary confinement, and is released from his cell only one hour a day.

Q: What is the process now?

KIM: If McVeigh doesn't change his mind by January 11 and file an extension for a notice of appeal, then a date will be set for execution by lethal injection. The federal Bureau of Prisons will determine the date, which could be announced in January.

Q: What determines the date of execution?

KIM: By law, the execution date can be no sooner than 120 days from the end of court proceedings.

Q: Though he attended via teleconference, you got to hear McVeigh. How did he sound? Was he confident? Did he display any emotion?

KIM: He was very polite and cordial. He seemed very much on the ball when it came to his legal rights, and very matter-of-fact. He wasn't emotional, and he treated the judge with utmost respect.

It appears he's totally knowledgeable about the legal system, and about his rights. It's obvious he's done a lot of research.

The judge wanted to be certain what Timothy McVeigh was getting into, and wanted to make sure he was confident with his decision. He asked McVeigh many questions.

McVeigh said he was under no duress or coercion by prison workers or anybody else.

Q: Were any Oklahoma City survivors or family members present?

KIM: It was mostly media in the court, but there were one or two survivors. No one really came out for this. There were no demonstrators.



RELATED STORIES:
Judge sets hearing in McVeigh's request
December 15, 2000
Oklahoma City bombing victims remembered, 5 years later
April 19, 2000
McVeigh: Gulf War killings led him on path to disillusionment
March 13, 2000
Agent who led arrest of McVeigh tries to put human face on FBI
April 16, 1999
Grand jury finds McVeigh, Nichols acted alone in Oklahoma bombing
December 30, 1998
Oklahoma City bombing trial
March 1997
Timothy McVeigh and the death penalty
December 1996
McVeigh, Nichols plead not guilty in bombing
August 13, 1996

RELATED SITES:
Federal Bureau of Investigation
U.S. Department of Justice
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
Oklahoma State Government


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