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Excerpts from transcripts of Friday’s court session in the trial

April 26, 1997

Excerpts from transcripts of Friday’s court session in the trial of Timothy McVeigh, as prepared by the official court reporter and distributed by PubNETics Inc. of Denver.

Testimony of Helena Garrett, who was questioned by U.S. Attorney Patrick Ryan.

(Garrett said she worked across the street from the federal building. Her 16-month-old son, Tevin Garrett, went to the day care center in the federal building. She also has a daughter, Sharonda Garrett, who was 7 at the time of the blast.)

Q. Now, tell us what happened, what you saw, what you felt, what you heard.

A. It was like a thunder boom, and it just shook me; and I screamed. ...

Q. What did you do when you got there? (the federal building)

A. I closed my eyes and I said, “One, two,” because I tried to imagine the building like it was, and I said, “two,” that’s where Tevin is, and I started climbing the debris. ...

Q. How far did you get?

A. Not very far because a man came and he pulled me down. He said I couldn’t go up there, and I told him my baby was in there.

Q. Why did you start climbing at that spot in the rubble?

A. Because if the building wasn’t destroyed, Tevin would have been in that particular room of the day-care center. He would have been right there; and I just closed my eyes and tried to be where he was, and that’s why I just imagined that that’s _ that’s where he was at.

Q. Now, after the man made you come down from the rubble, what did you do?

A. I saw two ladies on a stretcher. ... and I said, “I’m going to ask them about the babies.” ...

I bent down and I asked one of the ladies and I said, “Do you know where the babies are?” And she said, “No, I don’t know where they’re at.” ...

I came down to the corner and I yelled for Tevin, I yelled for Tevin and for Brenda. And there was a lot of people out there who were injured, but they were just sitting down and laying down on the ground; and I didn’t see Tevin outside.

Q. Then what did you do?

A. I went up the plaza, the plaza area of the day-care center. ... There was two men back there and I was screaming. I said, “My baby’s in there.” And one said, “What do you mean?”

I said, “There’s a day care in there. My baby’s in there.” And they both immediately went inside. ...

A. Then it’s like a few minutes later they start bringing out children. ...

I saw Rebecca Denney, and she was _ she wasn’t unconscious, and her eyes was opened. And I screamed, I said, “Rebecca.” And she looked over at me, and she looked as if she was dipped in blood. She was real, real bloody. ...

They brought out Nekia McCloud, and _ and she had a _ she was covered in _ how do you say it _ I had forgot that I did not take Sharonda there that morning, and I thought Nekia was my baby. And I screamed and I said, “That’s my baby.” And he took a step to me, and I realized that that wasn’t my baby because her hair is different than my daughter’s. Nekia had a little ponytail.

Q. What did you see after they brought Nekia out?

A. Her head looked as if it was gashed. It was kind of smashed, and she was unconscious. I didn’t know if she was alive. ...

A. They brought out Colton Smith. And he ran _ it was _ by this time, there was a doctor there; and he was standing, oh, not too far from me. And he brought the baby; and he said, “Here.”

And the doctor said _ he laid him on the bench by my knees and he said _ the doctor said, “There’s nothing I could do.” And Colton was _ he was bleeding from the mouth, and his stomach looked like it had been busted open. And I didn’t want to leave Colton, but I had _ I didn’t leave Colton, and I was still looking for my own baby; but I didn’t leave him. ...

And they started making a line from my feet past Colton all the way down of our babies wrapped up in these sheets, and I didn’t see Tevin. And I started crying up there and I _ and I was crying and I was screaming. I said, “You got to _ please don’t lay our babies on this glass.” It was black glass everywhere. I said, “Please, don’t lay our babies on the glass. We don’t want our babies on the glass.”

And I didn’t realize that these babies they were laying down was already dead; and I said, “Please, don’t lay them on the glass.” And this man left and he came back with this big type of broom, and he swept the glass for me. ...

A lady came, a nurse. She started tagging our babies; and right then I realized they were dead.

Q.When did you ultimately find out about your son?

A. Saturday. ...

Q. And prior to that time, had the police or law enforcement officers been to your home?

A. Yes. They came and fingerprinted Tevin’s _ he had a mirror, Mickey Mouse picture _ it was real big _ over his crib, and he would stand up and look at himself and touch it. They took fingerprints off of that. They took fingerprints off of his _ off of his high chair and off of my stereo glass.

Q. All right. Did you ever see Tevin again after that?

A. Yes, I did. I saw him at the funeral home on that Monday. It had to be a closed casket because he had a severe head injury.

Q. Were you able to see him? A. No, I just seen my baby’s feet and his hands; and they were still with like black stuff I guess, from the fingerprints. And I kissed his feet and I kissed his legs, and I couldn’t go up higher.

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