The father of a Calumet woman who authorities say was raped and then beaten to death by a Tulsa oil-field worker in 2013 says he is glad the trial is finally underway.
“It took five years and 10 months for it to start,” Keith Heinley said.
Heinley is the father of Amy Gibbins and the grandfather of Gibbins’ five-year-old son, Bryor.
The two died on Father’s Day 2013.
Firefighters found their bodies inside Gibbins’ Calumet home after fighting a fire that authorities said had been set to cover up Gibbins’ slaying.
Medical officials have said that Gibbins was raped and then beaten to death.
Bryor died as a result of the fire.
Heinley, who lives in Yukon, said he last saw Amy and Bryor two days before their deaths when they visited his home.
“Bryor got out of the car, and he ran up to me and kicked me with his cowboy boots,” Heinley said. “That was wonderful.”
It was one of the last memories he had with his grandson and his daughter.
“Amy was high-spirited. She was 22. She was my third daughter. She was a great kid. She was full of life and had a lot going for her. She had a lot of life left to live. Bryor was a great kid, and she was taking care of him and doing the best she could do. She was a great kid,” Heinley said.
Two days later, at 5 a.m., he got the call no parent wants to get. His daughter’s house was on fire and neither Amy nor Bryor could be found.
“I made it to Calumet by 5:35,” he said. “And I had to stop for gas.”
Thursday, while doing some weed work on a lawn he was mowing, Heinley said he is grateful the trial of Derek Don Posey is moving along.
“I feel blessed that we’re finally getting somewhere with it. There is no other way to put it. We’ve been in limbo waiting. It’s been hard on everybody, that’s for sure,” he said.
Heinley said he believes, in his heart, that Posey is guilty despite his claims that he is innocent.
Wednesday, Heinley sat through four hours of an interview conducted by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation with Posey a few days after he was arrested.
Heinley said some of the things that were said upset him. But he also called them lies that had already been disproven by previous witnesses.
“It hurt me at first. I had a hard time with it. I was listening to him lie about stuff that we knew was not true. It put, in my heart, the seal on the case. … It was really hard for me because we know. We know,” he said.
As the case prepares to go into its fourth week, Heinley said he still struggles with his daughter’s death.
He has been hospitalized at least three times because of the stress, Heinley said.
The fact that she died in such a violent fashion is part of the reason.
“If she had perished in a car accident, it would have been something we could have dealt with a little easier. But to have someone come in and rip her away from us like that. It was just devastating. I’m still not over it. I’m not going to ever be over it,” he said.
When asked if the trial might bring some closure, Heinley said it isn’t likely.
“I’m not sure I understand closure. I have asked myself that. Even when this is all said and done, I don’t know if I’m gonna have closure. I hope it makes a difference,” he said.
Posey could face the death penalty if convicted.
He was arrested in Tulsa about a week after Gibbins and her son died.
He was initially linked to the crime because he allegedly used Gibbins’ stolen debit card at a bank ATM in El Reno at about the same time as Calumet firefighters were battling the 4 a.m. blaze.
Posey claimed he had taken the debit card after breaking into Gibbins’ car outside her house.
However, authorities also have said that Posey was linked by DNA that was found on Gibbins’ body.
Posey was in the area at the time of Gibbins’ death because he was working in the oil-field industry.
Authorities say the two had met at a local bar, and claim that Posey was upset because Gibbins had rebuffed his advances.
Posey’s attorneys admitted that their client knew Gibbins, but say he had no interest in her.
They say he had a girlfriend in Tulsa.
They also admit that Posey was sitting in his car outside of the bar, which was across an alley from Gibbins’ house, but said he never went inside her home. He only broke into her car.
Also part of their defense has been to offer the suggestion that Gibbins’ ex-boyfriend might have been involved in the crime. They said he had once threatened to burn her home with Gibbins and her son still inside.
Gibbins and her former boyfriend had texted more than 70 times on the day before her death, and had even met briefly at Gibbins’ mother’s home to exchange furniture.
District Attorney Mike Fields has appealed that defense to the state’s appeals court. The court has yet to rule.