Police look into possible second person in Toomer's poisoning

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

Auburn, AL (WSFA) -  Auburn Police are looking into comments made on a popular online message board that could indicate a second person knew about the herbicide poisoning.

Sunday, the Opelika-Auburn News reported that beginning in early January, a blogger by the name of "Floribama" on TiderInsider.com began commenting about killing the trees, even mentioning the herbicide Spike 80DF by name.

The posts surfaced before the infamous call to the Paul Finebaum show on Jan. 27.

The report traced the man behind the username as the owner of the home in which suspect Harvey Updyke lives.

Auburn Police Chief Tommy Dawson told WSFA 12 news, "We are aware of how the two are connected, but I don't want to go into that because of it could hamper our investigation."

Dawson said they do not expect to make another arrest in the case, but they're following every possible lead.

"It is something we're looking into.  I have spoken with our detectives that are working with this case today.  We're not expecting any other suspects in this case though.  However, it is an active investigation," Dawson added.

Meanwhile, fans on both sides of the rivalry are coming together, hoping to build a foundation of sportsmanship.

Alabama fan Sean Phillips joined Auburn fans at Toomer's Corner this weekend.

"I just want to show that there's only one guy who took it this far, not the entire fan base.  This is a great loss for the state of Alabama, losing these trees, and I'm here to support and respect our rival," Phillips said.

The Alabama fan backed group, "Tide for Toomers" has raised more than $36,000 dollars, adding to Auburn's Toomer's Trees and Traditions Fund.

It's something Auburn fans call a heartwarming display of unity.

Auburn student Erin St. John, the organizer of the Toomer's Tree Hug event, said, "I'm so appreciative of that.  It's such a great thing for them to have done. It's just very nice, and I'll say Roll Tide to that."

The only suspect, Harvey Updyke, is out of jail, released from the Lee County Jail Friday on $50,000 dollars bond.

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