On April 19, 1995 when I heard the news (and literally heard the explosion) of the Murrah building, I was dumbfounded. As the realization sunk in that so many people and children were killed, I, along with millions of others watching the news coverage, felt that indescribable, overwhelming sensation in the pit of my stomach.
Yet as the "story" unfolded, my spirits were lifted as I saw example after example of sheer human compassion and an outpouring of unblemished, unconditional love flow forth in a far greater degree than I had ever seen in any venue of life, including and especially in political circles.
However, during the intense media coverage that followed, inconsistencies began emerging. Stories kept changing and although I couldn't see the emerging political angle, I could sense it. Those who dared oppose the revisionist news accounts were ostracized, mocked, discredited, dark-cornered, etc. I know, I was one who dared to be politically incorrect.
At some point it became painfully apparent that there was more wrong than right with the federal investigation. That is when I had a very tough decision to make. Should I sit and do nothing and remain in my comfort zone simply "playing the part" of the caring politician for the photo ops? Or should I really do the right thing even if it meant giving the phrase "politically incorrect" a whole new dimension?
It didn't take long after discussing it with my wife to determine that I had to do the right thing no matter what the consequences were to be. Having come to that conclusion, I decided to go forward to search out the truth and tell it to a waiting world. Journalists such as David Hoffman, concerned citizens, and a few ex-law enforcement officers, have made many personal sacrifices to bring this truth to the American people.
In response, the major media launched unheard of attacks against our desire to conduct constitutionally sound and proper investigations. The Daily Oklahoman and the Tulsa World have published nine separate editorials viciously attacking me, Glenn Wilburn and all those who have stood up and demanded all of the truth about this terrible crime.
An editorial from the Daily Oklahoman entitled, "Drop It, Mr. Key" even had the audacity to say:
As we argued when Key first set out on this course, the Legislature and its staff had no business investigating the bombing. It was, and is, poorly equipped to do so. The same can be said of a panel of local citizens.
People in powerful positions have repeatedly attacked those of us who have scrutinized the federal investigation. Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson issued a personal attack saying that I was proposing a "wasteful witch hunt" and was pushing "the worst kind of paranoid conspiracy pandering."
Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating, a former FBI agent himself, went so far as to say that "raising questions would not bring one whit of intelligence to the process." He later escalated his attacks saying those of us who were raising serious questions were "howling at the moon" and "off the reservation."
All of these people are literally robbing the victims family members and survivors and all of us the opportunity and right to know the truth.
All of us have had to fight the formidable disinformation and smear campaign waged by "faceless forces" that appear to have pockets of unending depth and the mass media at their beck and call.
Glenn Wilburn, who lost two grandchildren in the tragedy, and I filed a petition in November, 1995, to have a local county grand jury impaneled to investigate the bombing. This independent grand jury would be fully autonomous of the federal investigation, and would double in the capacity of a watchdog of the federal investigation.
Here in Oklahoma, we are very fortunate to be one of only two states that have a constitutional guarantee that the people of a county can cause a grand jury to be impaneled whenever they feel there is a need simply by circulating a petition. It is and always has been a common occurrence in our state.
Nevertheless, the Presiding State District Judge, Dan Owens, tried to stop us from petitioning to impanel the grand jury, and we were forced to appeal his actions to a higher court. That is where the latest and some of the most intense criticism has come from recently. One year after our appeal, we finally got a written opinion from the Court of Appeals in the Tulsa district. On December 24, 1996 the court ruled not only in our favor, but they did so unanimously.
Not only was it unanimous, but the court issued the decision "For Publication." That means that it was such a clear-cut case in regard to the state constitution, statutes, and previous case law, that it constituted a precedent-setting case to be used in lawbooks, most likely for many years to come.
Yet, why is there such extreme opposition to keep this independent grand jury from being allowed to assemble? As you will learn by reading this book, that is because some in our federal law enforcement agencies (i.e. ATF and FBI) had prior knowledge that certain individuals were planning to bomb the Murrah Federal Building!
Prior knowledge on the part of some individuals in the Federal Government may also be why the federal prosecutors barred every single witness to John Doe(s) from the Federal Grand Jury. Of the more than 20 witnesses to one or more John Doe(s), none not even one were allowed to tell the Grand Jury what they saw.
Additionally, when the prosecution's list of witnesses was unsealed, we found that the one witness who will be allowed to testify in the trial to McVeigh being in the company of a John Doe can't describe in any way who he saw. Indeed, the best witnesses who can positively place McVeigh in downtown Oklahoma City that morning saw him with one or more individuals and are able to describe to some degree what that person or persons looked like. Those witnesses were not even allowed to testify at McVeigh's trial.
As bizarre as that sounds, Federal Prosecutors were not allowing any of those witnesses to be seen or heard by the Federal Grand Jury. This gives "blind justice" a whole new meaning.
To make this even more clear, the Federal Grand Jury wanted to interview both the eyewitnesses and the sketch artist who drew the John Doe composites but they were flatly refused by the federal "authorities." Clearly they were blatantly deprived of their basic constitutional rights as grand jurors. Why?
Just what is it that they are trying to accomplish? Or, perhaps more pointedly, just who are they trying to protect? And what are they trying to hide?
Let's not forget, elected officials are supposed to be the servants of the people and not the other way around. Just what's going on? And how are they getting away with it?
Our efforts to reinvestigate the case before a county grand jury are important for numerous reasons. One of the reasons that concerns me most is that I fear that the record of McVeigh's trial will comprise the "official story" of what happened. If the evidence of prior knowledge and other perpetrators is not presented in this case, I fear that the government will be successful in shaping the official story to permanently exclude that evidence.
Another reason that I feel that the OKC bombing case is important and directly effects you is that the government has reached a new level of operating out of the bounds of the law and is becoming more and more arrogant. You will read about some of those cases in the second part of this book.
I don't know about you, but that kind of arrogance sickens me and leaves me with a eerie feeling. The government must not be allowed to get away with yet another botched job! The Government must be held accountable.
In spite of the seemingly impenetrable and insurmountable forces acting against us, on February 18, 1997 the Oklahoma State Supreme Court miraculously ruled in favor of allowing the independent county grand jury and against the Federal Government's attempt to quash the rights of the people. That grand jury is investigating the case as this book goes to press.
Based on two years of intense research and investigation, this book gives the public an insight into the evidence which the grand jury will confront. Hopefully now, the forgotten families, survivors, and victims who died from the blast will have their right to a full, open and truthful investigation of the events of April 19.
Rep. Charles Key
State Capitol Bldg., Rm 508
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
Publisher's note: The preceding Foreward was adapted for publication from an appeal letter sent by Representative Key to "concerned citizens" on 12 March 1997. Its publication in this book does not necessarily imply Rep. Key's endorsement of the author's conclusions. Both Rep. Key and David Hoffman spent long hours together investigating leads and sharing information regarding the Oklahoma City bombing.
Author's note: While Representative Key and the people of Oklahoma have succeeded in impaneling their grand jury, they are without the necessary funds to proceed with the investigation. Any contributions towards this effort may be sent to:
Oklahoma County Grand Jury &
Bombing Investigation Fund
Post Office Box 75669
Oklahoma City, OK 73147