- DENVER - It came to Marvin
Heemeyer while soaking in his hot tub in 2001 that God wanted him to turn
a bulldozer into a fortified tank and use it to teach the town of Granby,
Colo., a lesson.
- In a series of tapes Heemeyer recorded in the months
leading up to the bulldozer rampage, the 52-year-old former muffler repairman
said his decision to attack the town June 4 was "God's will."
- "God built me for this job," Heemeyer said
in an April 13 recording. He said it was God's plan that he not be married
or have a family so that he could be in a position to carry out such an
- The tapes, which Heemeyer mailed to his brother in South
Dakota shortly before stepping into his bulldozer, were released by the
Grand County, Colo., Sheriff's Office on Tuesday.
- They are nearly three hours in length. The last recording
was made 13 days before the rampage.
- Sheriff Rod Johnson said Heemeyer's brother received
the tapes a few days after Marvin Heemeyer took his armor-plated bulldozer
into downtown Granby, ramming it into 13 buildings and leveling nearly
half of them.
- No one was injured in the assault, which caused $5 million
- Heemeyer, who carried out the attack to avenge those
in town he felt had wronged him in a property dispute and had cost him
his retirement savings, shot himself to death when his bulldozer got stuck
in the back of the Gambles hardware store.
- "God blessed me in advance for the task that I am
about to undertake. It is my duty. God has asked me to do this. It's a
cross that I am going to carry, and I'm carrying it in God's name,"
- Heemeyer spoke angrily on tape about those he felt had
wronged him when he tried to stop a cement batch plant from being built
next to his muffler shop.
- He reserved his most damning comments for the cement
plant's owner, Cody Docheff, Sky-Hi News editor Patrick Brower, resident
Larry Thompson and the town council and planning board, accusing them of
conspiring against him in an effort to rezone a plot of land next to his
muffler shop for industrial purposes.
- Heemeyer also lamented the fact that Granby never allowed
him to hook up his muffler shop to the town's sewage line.
- He sued Granby over the zoning decision but lost. He
said that the town's decision ultimately cost him $300,000 to $500,000.
- "I'm fighting for my life here because this is my
future, this is my retirement," Heemeyer said.
- Heemeyer spoke of wanting to get caught preparing his
60-ton Komatsu D355-A bulldozer, which he referred to as his "MK Tank,"
saying that it would have been a sign from God that he shouldn't carry
out his plan.
- He said he spent the entire summer of 2003 welding steel
and concrete plating to the bulldozer and hoped to carry out his attack
last fall. But he said God told him to "take the winter off"
and delay his plan until the following year.
- Heemeyer was resigned to his death and mentioned it several
times as inevitable. b
- But he felt that his bulldozer assault was the only way
to teach enemies in Granby that they couldn't get away with exploiting
- "Because of your anger, because of your malice,
because of your hate, you would not work with me. I am going to sacrifice
my life, my miserable future that you gave me, to show you that what you
did is wrong," Heemeyer said.
- Sheriff Johnson said Heemeyer's recordings descended
into the realm of the fanatical.
- "When they start telling me that God's telling them
to do something, they are losing touch of reality," he said.
- Though Heemeyer mentions at the beginning of the first
tape that a "good friend" convinced him to record his thoughts,
Johnson said his department has been unable to determine the identity of
that person or whether the person knew of the attack before it happened.