The Rex Harper case was one of the most shocking and fascinating in Oklahoma’s crime history. A 31-year-old man living in Broken Arrow, Rex had come to visit family in January 1998 when two brutal perpetrators tragically killed him.
With no physical evidence or eyewitnesses to rely on, investigators had to resort to the most careful and prolonged interviewing process to get their answers finally.
Fifteen years later, this perplexing murder story has now been featured in Investigation Discovery’s “Murder on Main Street” series.
Regarded as an example of modern-day detective work at its best, dive into Rex Harper’s case if you want to find out more about how police were able to capture the incriminating killers and their current whereabouts today.
Rex Harper’s murder
The death of Rex Wayne Harper in January 1998 was a tragedy that shocked not only his family but also friends who recalled his joyful personality.
Born on July 19, 1966, to Hershel and Betty Harper from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, Rex had just married the love of his life Karie five months prior to his death.
The two were inseparable, with Karie describing how much she adored her husband’s sense of humor and how he always went the extra mile for her to make her smile.
Unfortunately, Rex’s life as Karie knew it was cut short in what appears to be a senseless act of violence when he was shot in the parking lot of Main Street Plaza.
May he rest in peace knowing that he left behind a legacy of joy and happiness to those who had the honor to know him.
According to local news, Rex was gunned down in the parking lot of a local shopping mall.
Police found his body with a single gunshot wound to his chest – the autopsy report concluded that the shot was fired from a high-powered rifle and had been delivered with remarkable accuracy.
The public still awaits an announcement of justice served in this matter, but every day new facts are revealed that may eventually lead to whatever might be determined as “the truth“.
Who killed Rex Harper?
When Rex Harper’s body was found following a frantic 911 call, the BAPD officers set out to determine who might have committed such a heinous act.
Roy Moody, the City utility worker who made the call, stated that he had heard a “loud bang” as Rex’s truck jumped the curb and slammed through a chain link fence.
The precision of the shot and the fact that there seemed to be no struggle or any other signs of altercation led many to consider if this could possibly be a case of an expert hitman.
In an attempt to uncover more clues into what had happened, it soon emerged that Rex’s wife Karie had been seeing a former rodeo champion named Claude Stanley “Stan” Williamson from Okmulgee, which only further muddled up the investigation.
Karie claimed that despite having known Stan for around four years before getting married to Rex, their relationship was not healthy because of the latter’s narcissism and domineering tendencies.
According to court filings, Karie and Stan had a long-term relationship that terminated in the fall of 1997, following which she married Rex.
On January 13, 1998, Karie allegedly quit their relationship permanently, which could have irritated Stan.
Where are David Gibson Jr. and Stan Williamson now?
Willie Hayes refused the murder charges and shocked everyone by taking a polygraph test to prove his innocence.
After passing the test, the charges against him were dropped. Rather than escaping justice, he became a state witness against Stan in his trial and testified about how he was allegedly contacted to commit a murder.
Despite all this, Stan managed to post more than $100,000 in bail and was detained in a private Tulsa detention center on a work release program.
Consequently, David was convicted of conspiracy and solicitation to commit first-degree murder at his 2001 trial as there had been enough evidence uncovered through Hayes’s testimony.
The events that followed were unexpected and are a testament to the gravity of such criminal activities.
According to official court documents, he is reportedly spending his sentence at the Lexington Assessment and Reception Center. He is in his 60s.
Stan was found not guilty of conspiring to commit first-degree murder.
The remaining co-defendants’ accusations were dropped, according to local news reports.
Stan was released from prison after serving less than four years of his term and now in his mid-seventies, he still leads a secluded life away from the spotlight.