TULSA Okla. – A Tulsa man was sentenced Thursday to life in prison for multiple crimes, announced U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson.
A federal jury convicted Elga Eugene Harper, 41, a Choctaw Nation citizen, on Feb. 9, for kidnapping in Indian Country; aggravated sexual abuse by force and threat in Indian Country; assault with a dangerous weapon with intent to do bodily harm in Indian Country; and assault resulting in serious bodily injury in Indian Country.
U.S. District Judge Stephen J. Murphy, III, who presided over the trial and sentencing, noted that the case was easily the most serious he had seen. He sentenced Harper to a total of life in prison on July 27.
“Elga Harper violently beat and sexually assaulted an elderly woman in her home for four hours,” said U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson. “The victim bravely faced her attacker and testified; and through her perseverance, strength and courage, justice was served in this case.”
“The victim in this case bravely took the witness stand to recount the tremendous suffering she endured at the hands of Elga Harper,” said FBI Oklahoma City Special Agent in Charge Edward J. Gray. “If not for her compelling testimony, Harper may not have received the two life sentences he indisputably deserves. The citizens of Oklahoma can rest assured he will never again be able to harm an innocent person.”
Harper had previously performed work at the victim’s home, and the two had numerous conversations about philosophy and her work in counseling. The woman eventually paid Harper in full and told him she no longer needed his assistance.
On May 4, 2022, several months after their last meeting, Harper returned unexpectedly to the victim’s home. After a brief conversation, he asked to use the bathroom. When Harper did not exit the bathroom, the victim walked toward the back of the home and found Harper standing naked in her room. Harper immediately attacked her.
During the next four hours, Harper violently assaulted the victim both physically and sexually. She pleaded for him to call 911, but he refused. He also ransacked her home, took her car keys, and told her to “shut up” when she prayed aloud. She called 911 as soon as he fled, reporting the assault and that Harper was responsible.
When officers arrived at the scene, they found the victim gravely injured, with extensive injuries to her face, head, neck, arms, hands, and legs.
Harper was located and taken into custody on May 10, 2022.
The FBI and Tulsa Police Department Special Victims Unit conducted the investigation with extensive support from other units in the Tulsa Police Department.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Chantelle D. Dial and Melody N. Nelson prosecuted the case.