Man Accused In 1997 Murder Arraigned Tuesday
OKLAHOMA CITY - On Tuesday afternoon, an Oklahoma County judge formally charged a suspected serial killer with the 1997 kidnapping and murder of 19-year-old Bethany woman.
It was 19 years ago when the body of Tiffany Johnston was found in a field in Yukon. Her mother remembers that day all too well.
“You don't believe it because it’s been 19 years,” said Kathy Dobry, Tiffany’s mother. “That's as long as Tiffany was alive!”
On Monday night, William Reece, 57, was transferred to the Oklahoma County jail on the anniversary of her death, and he was formally arraigned Tuesday afternoon on the anniversary that her body was discovered.
“So it’s a very significant day," said Dobry. "We always wished and hoped that this day would come.”
Reece remained silent as the judge read the charges against him and denied his bond.
But for the family of Tiffany Johnston, this silent shell of a man is the embodiment of evil.
He is accused of brutally killing and raping the young newlywed after he kidnapped her from a Bethany car wash back in 1997.
“If you'd have seen him on the streets you wouldn't have thought he was a serial killer,” said Dobry. “Apparently looks can be deceiving.”
For years, Johnston’s family had no answers as to who killed her.
But last year, DNA evidence linked Reece to the crime. He is a convicted felon serving time in a Texas prison for kidnapping a woman there. And he is wanted in at least three other murders.
“But if it hadn't been for Tiffany's case none of the cases in Texas would be this far along,” said Dobry. “Everything he did was about him, he didn't worry about the families or the girls and he didn't ask the girls if they wanted to die when he killed them he just did it so in my book he has no right to ask for anything.”
Authorities have already found the bodies of two of the young women Reece is accused of kidnapping and killing in Texas. He is linked to at least four murders and several more attacks, but Johnston's mother is just thankful he will be forced to face a judge and jury in her daughter's case.
"We want justice for Tiffany, because that's what we worked so hard for,” said Dobry. “But we also want justice for the girls down there (Texas). And there might be other ones he murdered that no one knows about. But he's not talking. For 19 years, we pushed for who murdered my daughter and now we have the answer.”
Dobry just hopes Reece will get the death penalty, and not life in prison.
“I want the death penalty,” said Dobry. “And he deserves what he gets.”
Dobry said state prosecutors told her they are planning on seeking the death penalty.
Texas news stations have reported that once Reece faces trial in Oklahoma, he will then be brought back to Texas to be charged with the other murders there.