Man arrested in Toomer’s oak poisoning

Published 12:03 pm Thursday, February 17, 2011

AUBURN – The Auburn Police Division arrested Harvey A. Updyke Jr., 62, of Dadeville, on a warrant charging him with Criminal Mischief 1st Degree Thursday morning.

His arrest stems from an investigation involving the application of herbicide to the oak trees located at Toomer’s Corner in the downtown area of the University of Auburn campus. Updyke was transported to the Lee County Detention Center where he remains under a $50,000 bond.

The Auburn Police Division is receiving assistance in the investigation from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Marshals Service, State of Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries (Pesticide Management Section), Tallapoosa County Sheriff’s Office, Dadeville Police Department and Auburn University.

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“This is good news for the campus and community, especially since we delayed announcing the bad news about the trees for a few days to protect the investigation that was in progress,” Auburn University President Jay Gogue said. “We’re proud of the City of Auburn’s police department and hope this arrest brings a sense of resolution to our fans.”