Updyke, poisoner of Toomers Corner trees, dies

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Harvey Updyke, the Alabama fan who poisoned the iconic trees at Auburn University’s Toomer’s Corner, has died, his son told AL.com. He was 71.

Updyke pleaded guilty in 2013 of applying herbicide to the trees, which Tigers fans traditionally decorate with toilet paper after a win, following Auburn’s Iron Bowl victory over Alabama in 2010.

He was convicted of felony criminal damage of an agricultural facility, served more than 70 days in jail and was ordered to pay about $800,000 in restitution, though as of last October he had paid only $6,900, according to court records.

Last year, Updyke submitted a letter to the court from his doctor that said he suffered from conditions including severe coronary disease, congestive heart failure, diabetes, strokes and depression, and therefore wasn’t well enough to appear in court.

His son, Bear Updyke, told AL.com that his father, a retired Texas state trooper who lived in Louisiana, died of natural causes.

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