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Another attorney wants off Auburn tree poisoning case

Harvey Almorn Updyke Jr.

Shortly after he was named to represent alleged Toomer’s Corner poisoner Harvey Updyke, Philip Tyler requested he be removed from the case due to “numerous personal and family ties to Auburn University”, as well as his job as a part-time professor at the university.

Now, the attorney named as Tyler’s replacement is attempting the same maneuver.

An NBC affiliate in Alabama is reporting that Jerry Hauser filed a motion Tuesday morning requesting to be left off the case.  Per the station’s website, Hauser claimed in his request that he has a conflict of interest in the case because his wife is the Head of the Department of Communication and Journalism at Auburn University.

Updyke was arrested last Wednesday and charged with first-degree criminal mischief for allegedly spreading a herbicide on the ground around the 130-year-old Toomer’s Corner oaks.  He was released on a $50,000 bond late last week.

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8 Responses to “Another attorney wants off Auburn tree poisoning case”
  1. burntorangehorn says: Feb 22, 2011 12:27 PM

    This is Alabama. Everyone’s family tree is going to have lots of close branches with lots of ties to one or both schools.

  2. vegasrobert says: Feb 22, 2011 12:55 PM


  3. irishking says: Feb 22, 2011 1:37 PM

    Updyke is saying ‘Where is My Cousin Vinny?’ I need representation or the case venued to Ecuador.

  4. lemmam says: Feb 22, 2011 2:02 PM

    I’ve read this guy was a state trroper in Texas. With that look on his face I bet everyone he ever pulled over and harrased would like to walk up tto him and just b*$%# slap him!

  5. southernpatriots says: Feb 22, 2011 3:16 PM

    The pool of “public defenders” or those performing the legal defense work “pro bono” may have a huge number of graduates of Auburn or Alabama (as burntorangehorn) posted. Even changing the venue to Birmingham, Mobile, or Huntsville would not change that much at all. Maybe there is one or two in the pool which may be new arrivals from up north, maybe from Ohio State or Michigan, etc?

  6. stairwayto7 says: Feb 23, 2011 3:55 PM

    A lawyer afraid to help a man who killed a tree? Stay classy bama fan!

  7. irishking says: Feb 23, 2011 4:02 PM

    A good and capable lawyer should be willing to represent a person who the community views as a ‘monster’.

  8. southernpatriots says: Feb 23, 2011 4:15 PM

    irishking: They would have to find a lawyer who is willing to work “Pro bono publico” AND not have any connections to Auburn, its staff, football program, boosters, (and maybe fans) and the same for Alabama, because if he or she does have any connection and represents this mental case the attorney can have his/her law license pulled. It is very serious for an attorney—any perceived conflict of interest. Although, all we have heard from tell us this case will never make it to trial but will be pleaded and (after a psychiatric examination–our contribution) settled by next spring.

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