The first day of Harvey Updyke’s trial for his alleged involvement in poisoning the oak trees at Toomer’s Corner began with jury selection.
Turns out, Updyke may not need a jury of his peers to decide his fate as it appears the Alabama fan has unofficially confessed to his crime.
Speaking to Andrew Yawn of The Auburn Plainsman this afternoon, Updyke, in a rather shocking move, basically admitted to poisoning the trees.
“Did I do it? Yes,” Updyke said outside of an elevator on the second floor of the Lee County Justice Center in Opelika.
“They’re going to find me guilty… it’s a done deal,” Updyke said. “I don’t think I’m going to get a fair trial.”
Officially, Updyke has pleaded not guilty to several counts of desecration of a venerated object, first-degree criminal mischief and unlawful damage or vandalism of a crop facility. His attorney, Everett Wess, says he was not aware of Updyke’s alleged “confession.” Updyke said he thought if Wess knew of the supposed confession, he would drop him.
Additionally, Updyke’s health has apparently been in decline for some time. He told the Plainsman he’s lost over 60 pounds since his arrest last year and is taking 18 different medications.
“I guarantee he won’t last the trial without something happening,” Updyke’s wife, Elva, said.
Updated: 6/20 12:25 p.m.: Updyke’s attorney, as one would expect, has denied that his client “admitted” to poisoning the trees at Toomer’s Corner.
“There were other reporters around from ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, al.com, AP, major, major media outlets, and all of you were swarming in the courtroom, the lawyers were around the courtroom, and we think it’s kind of odd that a student reporter from Auburn University was able to get this story when all these major media outlets have been here the entire time,” Wess said.“No one saw this reporter getting this information from Updyke.”