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Nichols' Ex-Wife Believes Her Testimony Would Hurt Him

October 14, 1995|Associated Press

DETROIT — The ex-wife of Oklahoma City bombing suspect Terry L. Nichols says that, although she believes he is innocent, she could provide testimony that could "put a stake in his heart."

Lana Padilla says she has many nagging questions about Nichols, including why he used aliases so often in the months before the April 19 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, which killed 169 people.

"Why did Terry need aliases, such as Ted Parker and Mike Havens? It wasn't illegal to use an alias, but normal people didn't have any reason to," she writes in "By Blood Betrayed," a book to be published next week by Harper-Paperbacks.

Federal authorities allege that Nichols used those names and others in planning the bombing. Nichols and Timothy J. McVeigh are in a federal prison in El Reno, Okla., awaiting trial for the bombing.

While emphasizing her belief that Nichols is innocent, Padilla says that if Nichols were involved, "Terry would have to have been the mastermind." She says McVeigh "wasn't smart enough."

Padilla expects that she and 13-year-old Josh Nichols, a son she and Nichols had while married and living in Michigan, will be called to testify. If so, she says, she may have to describe "information so damaging to Terry Nichols it could put a stake in his heart."

Padilla now lives in Las Vegas.

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