PRAGUE, Okla. (KFOR) – December 8, 2020, marked the beginning of a nightmare for one Oklahoma family after they found their 14-year-old daughter’s lifeless body in their garage with a gunshot wound to the head.
Since then, KFOR has spoken extensively with this family.
For them, it has been a complicated journey filled with doubt and a back-and-forth battle over the ruling of their daughter’s death and who is responsible.p
“I used to come in here every day. I still come in here a lot. I’ll just sit on her bed. Sit in her chair. Just so I can feel close to her. Sometimes I talk to her in here,” Heather Williams said. “It still smells like her.”
Alaunna Raffield has not been in her bedroom in two years. She was Heather’s only child and just 14 years old.
“Her cheer uniform is still on the floor. I can’t even bring myself to pick it up,” Heather said. “Probably forever. I can’t.”
December 8, 2020.
“About 6:15 that morning, Heather got up to let the dogs out, and I was in there getting ready for work,” Kevin Williams said.
Kevin heard Heather crying in the garage.
“Heather was kneeling down next to Alaunna. She was lying down on the ground flat out on her back,” he said. “So we called 911.”
Police arrived at their home.
“They kept asking us questions if she’s left-handed. Was she in a physical altercation the night before? She had bruises on her abdomen, and there was a gunshot on her left side,” Kevin said.
Alaunna is right-handed, but a gunshot went through the left side of her head and exited the right. No bullets have ever been found. There was no note.
Kevin and Heather say they never heard the sound of a gunshot in their small home. It was not unusual for Alaunna to get up in the middle of the night to let out her puppy, but what was unusual is the way she was found.
“To be standing like this facing out that way, there is a big, blank wall there that there would be a bullet hole,” Kevin said. “There was nothing.”
What little evidence Alaunna’s parents believe could exist they say either was never given a second look or destroyed. Within weeks, her death was ruled a suicide.
“We’re the only ones fighting for her,” Heather said.
Two years later, Heather and Kevin have filed a wrongful death civil suit.
“It’s a small town with limited resources,” attorney Lloyd Palmer said.
Palmer heads up a team of attorneys working the case. They, along with Alaunna’s parents, believe the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation should have handled the case from the beginning.
“On the most basic level, these things are bizarre,” Palmer said.
A gun powder residue test was never conducted on Alaunna’s head or hands but was on her clothing after a funeral home employee washed the sweater she was wearing three times. The gun that was found several feet from her body belonged to the family but has never been positively identified as the gun used in her death.
Also of interest is Alaunna’s relationship with an 18-year-old boy, who admitted to police that he logged into Alaunna’s social media account after her death to get pictures. He also admitted to investigators that he is the one responsible for multiple cryptic messages sent from Alaunna’s account after her death.
“These are very strange messages,” attorney William Blocker said. “It could shed some light even if we have a bad relationship with a young man that was young but definitely too old. You combine that with all the facts of the case, it just doesn’t add up.”
News 4 obtained the boy’s phone records, subpoenaed by attorneys, from his cell phone provider.
“We want to know if he had any influence good or bad,” Palmer said.
Police did search his phone for a disturbing video the boy told police he had that detailed how to make a murder look like a suicide. However, his cell phone location would reveal perhaps the most telling evidence of all – where he was at the time of Alaunna’s death. While the teen has been served with the civil suit, News 4 is not naming him. Because he has never been arrested on any criminal complaints relating to Alaunna’s death.
“If he’s in the same town where he said he was not, then I don’t think this is going to be our job anymore.,” Palmer said. “This should not be in the civil court at that matter. It should be prosecuted.”
The Prague Police Department says they closed the case. The OSBI says they never opened one. The District Attorneys Office tells News 4 Alaunna’s case is an open investigation. The unanswered questions in this case are just as conflicting as the case’s status. Open or closed? Murder or suicide?
“That’s probably the hardest thing as parents not knowing,” Kevin said.
“I would love to have justice for her,” Heather said. “How many cases are there like this in the world?”
On December 8, 2022, Heather and her husband received a phone call from State Representative Kevin Wallace’s office informing them that language for a bill is being drafted that will require the OSBI to investigate crimes scenes or cases like Alaunna’s instead of police departments that may not have the proper resources.