Statement to the Woodburn Community from Mayor Lonergan

Posted on December 15, 2022

City of Woodburn – 12/14/22 1:10 PM

Statement from Woodburn Mayor Lonergan:

This week marks the somber 14th anniversary of the Woodburn bank bombing that resulted in the murders of
Woodburn Police Captain Tom Tennant and Senior Trooper Bill Hakim and seriously wounding Police Chief
Scott Russell and employees of West Coast Bank. Since that terrible day, the Woodburn community has stood
together in support of those first responders who were not only impacted by the bombing, but have continued to
serve and protect our culturally rich and vibrant City with honor, integrity and professionalism.
For those impacted, the road has not been easy.

As Mayor, I was shocked and angered to learn that Governor Brown unilaterally commuted the death sentences
of the two murderers who committed these terrible crimes against our police officers and our community
without consultation or apparent consideration of victims, the City, the Woodburn Police Department or any
evaluation of the specific facts related to the convictions of the bombers, who were found guilty by an Oregon
jury and sentenced by a Marion County Judge.

Despite the senseless and tragic loss of life that day, families, friends, co-workers and the many members of our
community affected by the bombing have worked to move forward with the assurance that the criminal justice
system would deliver justice commensurate with the heinous crime perpetrated on the victims ofthe bombing and
the Woodburn community. The massive resources expended to apprehend these murderers, fairly adjudicate them
and sentence them to a similar fate they imposed on their victims has been of solace.

After a trial lasting more than two months, a jury convicted Bruce and Joshua Turnidge of murder and placed
them both on death row. In 2016, the Oregon Supreme Court carefully considered the case and issued an 143 page
opinion upholding the convictions.

Governor Brown’s unilateral decision to supersede the legal process, commuting the sentences of the Woodburn
bombers, is a betrayal of those who relied on and believed that the criminal justice system would fairly deliver
justice to those who killed and maimed our first responders and attacked our community members.

Governor Brown’s decision is an injustice to those who were affected by the bombing and a repudiation of Oregon
voters who established the death penalty for those convicted of murdering innocent victims and police officers.

We expected better.

Frank Lonergan
City of Woodburn, Oregon

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