Jared Harper and his five children stood outside of the Creek County Courthouse, holding up signs reading “End DUI,” and “Justice for Billie.” It was the day of the court hearing for Justin Milwee, and a day that the Harpers had been waiting for since last Christmas.
Billie Marie Harper was on her way home from her mother’s house with her then-14-year-old daughter Amber, when she was tragically killed while attempting to make a left turn onto 181st from Alt. Hwy 75. Justin Milwee was traveling southbound on Alt. Hwy 75 and witnesses said he had been driving in excess of 75 miles an hour, weaving in and out of traffic. As Billie Harper began her turn, Justin Milwee pulled into the wrong lane to pass the stopped traffic and slammed into Harper’s Lincoln Towncar, causing it to roll. Amber, who’s now 15, recounted the experience. “I don’t remember much, just a crash, the glass, the screaming, and my clothes were covered in my mom’s blood.”
Harper was killed by the impact, and miraculously, her daughter suffered only a few scratches. “I thank God for her being saved from this,” Billie’s husband Jared Harper said.
Justin Milwee was due in court on Wednesday, July 22nd, at 1:30 p.m. to face charges of First Degree Manslaughter and DUI, and Jared Harper has been very clear about his desire: “We want to see this guy tried by twelve,” he said.
The road to get here has taken just seven months, and for Jared Harper, the waiting has been a big part of it. “It took 110 days to get the blood work back,” he told Sapulpa Times in a Facebook conversation earlier this week. “I think it would’ve taken much longer if the [District Attorney’s Office] wouldn’t have been hounding the OSBI for it.” The results said Milwee had fentanyl, hydrocodone, and marijuana in his system at the time of the accident.
Harper says the DA then had to put his case together, and at the end of it all, it had been 156 days before Milwee was arrested, and he bonded out a short while later.
Milwee was convicted of Driving While Under the Influence once already, in August of 2013. He also has convictions of Bringing Contraband into a Jail (January 2012) and Attempted Larceny and Second-Degree burglary (January 2013).
The McGirt Vs. Oklahoma case from earlier this month could come into play in this case as well. Harper said if his wife or Milwee are found to certifiably Native American, the case would be taken to a federal level, which could impose a harsher sentence.