John Doe #2 Identified: But Can We Get the FBI to Arrest Him?


12 July 1996




NOTE: Things are breaking fast and furious now, folks. Watch for an Inside Edition coming up in the next few days.... Wouldn't be surprised if this wasn't a banner Sunday for John Doe headlines all across the country. Hey ABC, how come you won't return our calls? Are you in final editing, or just stalling? NBC is close behind, don't trip now. Who will be the first to place Strassmeir on the ATF snitch payroll?

Odds against Strassmeir staying alive are mounting as the conspiracy begins to unravel...he really is the pivot man in this. Hope the ODESSA hasn't lost it's edge, don't you Andy? Is your daddy wangling GSG9, the German counterterrorist unit, to protect your terrorist posterior? What irony, if so. Are you or your buddies planning on visiting the Olympics? Why didn't you tell us you knew the Muellers? Is Kirk counting on his FBI handlers getting him out of this tightening jam, or is he looking at beachfront property in Paraguay?



OVERHEARD AT MILITIA BRIEFING ON OLYMPIC TERRORIST THREATS: "You know, one of the deepest disappointments of my life was when I realized that my daddy's generation had killed all the Nazis worth killin' and I wasn't going to get a crack at them. Things are starting to look up. Now, I know where Elohim and Hayden Lake and Kirk's little place are, but where'd you say that Aryan place on the Missouri-Arkansas border was?"


Big stories sometimes get told by little papers. It doesn't happen often and when it does, it is usually the result of a happy combination of an aggressive investigative reporter, a courageous editor and proximity to the events in the story. In the McCurtain (Oklahoma) Gazette we have just such a combination. Most of the unfolding revelations of the OKC conspiracy story have been told first in that small newspaper by reporter J.D. Cash. Attached you will find one of his stories from the Sunday, June 30 edition of the Gazette. Expect an even bigger story in THIS Sunday's edition.

Coming up in Part Nine: Petruskie and THE NEW AMERICAN.

McCurtain Gazette 30 June 1996

McCurtain, OK

By J.D. Cash with Jeff Holladay

The FBI, which once promised to pursue the Oklahoma City bombing investigation "without rest," may have allowed bombing suspect "John Doe No. 2" to slip from under its nose and escape to Canada.

Curiously, the federal agency also allowed a mysterious German national with possible knowledge and links to the bombing to flee the U.S. and make his way back to Berlin.

Both had ties to Elohim City, a white separatist religious compound in eastern Oklahoma, which key witnesses believe holds many of the secrets to the "Patriot's Day" mass murder of April 19, 1995, in Oklahoma City.

Their suspicions focus on Andreas Carl Strassmeir, 37, Michael Brescia, 24, and Dennis W. Mahon, 46.

As reported earlier in the Gazette, Andy Strassmeir fled the U.S. through Mexico last January after pointed questions were raised in this newspaper about his links to bombing suspects.

Strassmeir today is back in his native Berlin and enjoying the legal protection of German political officials that his father, former Secretary of State Guenther Strassmeir, put into office.

Only after repeated articles and news programs about Strassmeir and his connections to bombing defendant Timothy McVeigh and Elohim City did the U.S. attorney's office in Oklahoma City ever bother to contact him.

Kirk Lyons, Strassmeir's attorney in the U.S., said his client recently participated in a 90-minute conference call with a representative of the Justice Department.

Strassmeir has previously denied any knowledge of the Oklahoma City bombing despite links clearly established between him, McVeigh and other purported suspects.

Now, the Gazette has just learned that Strassmeir's former Elohim City roommate, Michael Brescia - suspected to be "John Doe No. 2" by some witnesses - may have slipped away from the U.S. and made his way to Canada.


Do the secrets of the Oklahoma City bombing reside somewhere within the Christian Identity religious compound of Elohim City?

To some investigators, witnesses and victims of the Oklahoma City bombing, there seems mounting evidence that the white separatist compound has yet to give up all its secrets. and they would like authorities to step up their probe of the compound.

The Gazette has learned that just weeks before the bombing, the Rev. Robert Millar, founder of Elohim City, sought out a meeting with FBI officials in Muskogee.

He warned them, "Something very bad is about to happen to the federal government, and white supremacists may get the blame for it."

No other details of the meeting are available, but it raises tantalizing new questions about foreknowledge of the pending bombing attack.

And what of Oklahoma City bombing defendant Tim McVeigh?

Did he have links with Elohim City?

McVeigh's visits to Elohim City have been consistently denied by residents. But a traffic citation issued to McVeigh in 1993 on a backroads highway just four miles from Elohim City seems to dispute that.

In fact, Morris Dees of the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Ala., recently said at a news conference in Denver that his sources told him McVeigh had visited the religious compound more than a dozen times prior to the bombing.

This information coincides with law enforcement sources contacted by the Gazette, who also confirmed he visited Elohim City on numerous occasions using the alias "Tim Tuttle."

Another visitor to the compound was McVeigh's ex-army buddy and admitted co-conspirator, Michael Fortier.


During a pretrial hearing in Denver only a few weeks ago, special prosecutor Beth Wilkerson told U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch that the government had the only two "masterminds" in the bombing - Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols.

But that contention is now evaporating under intense press scrutiny which suggests the involvement of others in the bombing.

At least part of that story goes back to June 14, 1995, when the Justice Department announced that the witnesses at Elliott's Body Shop in Junction City, Kan., were confused when they said there was a second person with McVeigh when he rented a Ryder rental truck - the one federal prosecutors believe was used in the Oklahoma City bombing.

As this newspaper has previously reported, the employees of Elliott's Body Shop have never changed their belief that another person was present with McVeigh when he rented the truck.

"I know McVeigh was there with another person...I helped the FBI do the sketch of John Doe No. 2," said Tom Kessenger recently. "I watched him standing there for a long time...He had his arms crossed and never said a word while one of our employees filled out the rental papers for McVeigh."

Kessenger described John Doe No. 2 as around 5-9 tall, with short dark hair, trim. He was wearing a T-shirt on the day of the truck rental with a portion of a tattoo showing on his upper left arm, Kessenger said.

"He is youngish and very good looking for a guy - what you would call a 'ladies man'."

When shown a college yearbook photo taken in 1990 of Michael Brescia, Kessenger said after careful study, "I think that's very close!...He could be the man I'm looking for."


Dennis W. Mahon of Tulsa, former head of the Ku Klux Klan in Oklahoma and reputedly the No. 3 official with the White Aryan Resistance at the time of the bombing, identified Brescia in an interview last January with this newspaper as being the person depicted in the sketch of John Doe No. 2.

"He's the pretty boy they are looking for," Mahon said. "He's 5- 8 or so, and he's got short, dark hair combed back...a tan, strong upper body and a tattoo on his arm..."

Another witness also identified John Doe No. 2 as being with McVeigh when he checked into the Dreamland Motel in Junction City, Kan., on April 14, 1995.

A hairdresser at a local beauty salon, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said McVeigh and another man came to the shop, with the second man asking if he could get a haircut.

She told him she didn't have time and they left.

But shown a photo later of Brescia, the witness seemed shocked. "That could be him," she said. "I would want to see a better picture to be sure."

But getting a better photo of Brescia, a former LaSalle student, is not easy.

On a recent trip to Elohim City, Joan Millar, daughter-in-law of the founder, produced one - but declined to allow it to be circulated.

Did he have a tattoo on his arm as Dennis Mahon had said?

"Yes, but I won't tell you what it is or where it is located," Joan Millar said.

It had previously been reported, though, that Brescia has a tattoo of a circle with a cross in the center - reportedly the emblem of the white supremacist group, White Aryan Resistance.


Brescia's movements after the bombing have often been difficult to determine.

This past January, the Gazette contacted a close friend of Brescia's, Mark Thomas, the leader of the White Aryan Resistance in the Pennsylvania area, who admitted Brescia had visited Oklahoma prior to the bombing and was then staying on his farm near Allentown, Pa.

Later, an investigator for McVeigh's defense team talked to Brescia's father, who told him his some had left the Thomas farm.

A break in the search for Brescia may have occurred recently when two former Elohim City residents, Scott Stedeford and Kevin McCarthy, were nabbed by the FBI in Ohio for questioning in the Aryan Nation's bank robberies. Prosecutors say the men were part of a series of bank holdups between 1992 and 1995.

Brescia is believed to have formed a rock band with the two after the Oklahoma City bombing.

The Rev. Robert Millar, head of Elohim City, said Stedeford and McCarthy had been sent by Thomas to stay at Elohim City and that while that there they were associates of Brescia and Strassmeir.

Was it possible Brescia could be involved in the bank robberies?

Millar said he couldn't imagine Brescia doing anything like that.

"But if he (Brescia) did do something would be something that Strassmeir put him up to."

He said it would not surprise him to learn that Strassmeir got Brescia into "something like the gun robbery in Hot Springs."

Two other witnesses interviewed by this newspaper discussed McVeigh's associations with Brescia.

In a related development, England's London Sunday Telegraph will report in today's edition that these witnesses told the FBI only four days after the bombing that the subject of the nationwide manhunt, John Doe No. 2, was an old friend of McVeigh's - Michael Brescia.

A former friend of Tim McVeigh's, the woman told reporters that she and her Herington, Kan., girlfriend "partied" with McVeigh, Fortier and Brescia during 1992.

Said Catina Lawson, "I told the FBI when they arrested Tim, that they should be looking for his friend Mike as well...because he fits the sketch and description of John Doe No. 2."

Catina's mother, interviewed separately by this newspaper a few weeks ago, told much the same story and related that Andreas Strassmeir had visited her home same year.

"Andy (Strassmeir) was a friend of my daughter's friends - who included McVeigh, Fortier and Brescia," she said. "Four days after the bombing, I told the FBI that they should be looking for him (Brescia) because he fit the description of John Doe No. 2 and he was a companion of Tim's..."

Is the FBI really looking for Brescia?

Federal sources have told the Gazette they have some questions they'd like to ask Brescia - but that's about the extent of their comments.

Meantime, several large news organizations - including the New York Times, Long Telegraph, the Tennessean and the Philadelphia Inquirer, along with ABC and NBC - are also looking for far, without any luck.

Sources at ABC report they have investigators in Canada now because of tips they've received that Brescia is there.

Joan Millar told the Gazette last week that her daughter is in contact with Brescia but that she will not reveal his whereabouts.

"I know he hasn't been picked up by the FBI...that is all I will say about that."

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