Harvey Updyke, man who poisoned Toomer's Oaks, dead at 71

Ross Houston
August 2, 2020

At the time of his death Thursday in Louisiana of natural causes, Updyke still owed $788,588.98 in restitution and another $19,525 in court fees, according to court records.

Infamous Alabama fan Harvey Updyke has died.

Harvey Updyke, an Alabama fan who made national headlines for poisoning trees at Auburn University's Toomer's Corner back in 2010, has died at the age of 71. In 2010, the Alabama football team had lost against the Auburn Tigers during the Iron Bowl.

"The weekend after the Iron Bowl, I went to Auburn because I lived 30 miles away", he said at the time.


Updyke gained attention in January of 2011 after his call into The Paul Finebaum Show, where he admitted to poisoning the trees.

Updyke used a potent herbicide known as Spike 80DF to poison the trees. Updyke told Rocca. "I admit I, I like them too much".

Updyke pleaded guilty to a felony charge of criminal damage to an agricultural facility in 2013 and served more than 70 days in jail.

Updyke paid just $8,143 of the almost $800,000 he owed in restitution stemming from the poisoning of the Toomer's Oaks.


Harvey spent time in jail over the crime ... and was ordered to pay almost $1 million in restitution.

Auburn cut down the trees in 2013. He had even left a message on the phone of a professor at Auburn University claiming that he had details of the person who had poisoned the trees.

After his arrest, Updyke pleaded guilty via a plea deal to poisoning the two trees in 2013 and spent time in jail and was given probation in addition to being ordered to pay almost $800,000 in restitution for the damage he did.


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