Image: Joshua A. Turnidge
Joshua A. Turnidge faces multiple charges, including murder and manufacturing and possession of a dangerous device. His father was arrested Tuesday.
updated 12/17/2008 10:37:14 AM ET 2008-12-17T15:37:14

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 believe is the alleged motive for the crime. 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."

Officer believed it was a hoax
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 were investigating a bomb threat called in to a Wells Fargo bank that is next door to the West Coast Bank branch where the explosion occurred. Officials found the box holding the bomb in a garbage bin, and Hakim believed it was a hoax after he inspected and X-rayed the box.

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.

© 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Discussion comments


Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments