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Evidence pointed to Rudolph

By Associated Press
© St. Petersburg Times
published June 7, 2003

ATLANTA - At least 15 witnesses have said a 911 caller who warned of an impending bombing at the 1996 Olympics sounded like Eric Rudolph, according to court documents unsealed Friday.

The documents - released after a request filed by the Associated Press - also detail fiber and ballistics evidence, and link Rudolph's handwriting to several letters claiming responsibility for other bombings in Alabama and Georgia.

In addition, a statement from a sibling included in the court file says Rudolph speculated, shortly after the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, that the Olympics would be a prime target for a terrorist attack because the whole world would be watching.

The documents say fibers on the bombs match material taken from Rudolph's truck, and five shell casings found in a storage locker belonging to him contained powder chemically consistent with debris from the Olympic bomb.

A call after business hours seeking comment from Richard Jaffe, Rudolph's Birmingham lawyer, was not immediately returned.

Rudolph, 36, a former soldier and survivalist, was taken into custody Saturday in the same wilderness region of North Carolina where he long was suspected of living on the lam.

He remains jailed in Birmingham, Ala. He has pleaded innocent in the Jan. 29, 1998, bombing of New Woman All Women Health Care that killed an off-duty police officer and critically injured a nurse.

Rudolph also is accused in the 1996 Olympic park bombing in Atlanta, where a woman was killed and more than 100 were injured, and a pair of 1997 bombings in Atlanta at a lesbian bar and a building that housed an abortion clinic.

The documents released Friday say a wooden dowel was inserted like a handle across the top of the backpack Rudolph allegedly used to carry the Olympic bomb. Investigators say the technique was commonly used at the Air Assault School at Fort Campbell, Ky., where Rudolph served in 1988. One soldier told police he saw Rudolph rig his Army pack in the same manner.

Also, all the Atlanta bombs used small Rubbermaid plastic containers and Westclox timers, the documents say. One of the containers was found in a locker Rudolph rented in Murphy, N.C.

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