Former Tulsa Police Sergeant Recalls Involvement With 'Whitey' Bulger

Tuesday, October 30th 2018, 5:32 pm
By: Emory Bryan

The mobster James "Whitey" Bulger died in prison Tuesday morning and multiple sources say he was murdered.

Bulger was the man who ordered the murder of Tulsan Roger Wheeler, an executive shot in a country club parking lot 1981. Tulsa Police homicide detectives helped bring Bulger to justice even though he was a mobster in Boston. The murder was a mob hit, ordered by Whitey Bulger.

He was the FBI's Most Wanted for 16 years until he was captured in 2011. The Tulsa connection to Whitey Bulger was a murder case that lasted through the career of retired Detective Mike Huff.

"It impacted my life through two divorces,” said Huff.

In 1981, Sergeant Huff investigated the murder of Roger Wheeler. He was a Tulsa business executive, killed in his car at Southern Hills Country Club. Bulger didn't kill him, but he hired the man who did.

For 20 years, Bulger ran a gang of mobsters around Boston. In 1994, as federal agents closed in, he fled on a tip from a corrupt FBI agent. The resulting scandal took Sergeant Huff before Congress to testify about the Tulsa case.

“The biggest part of my life was spent dealing with Whitey Bulger and I'm glad it's over,” Huff said.

Bulger was convicted, sentenced to life for conspiracy, extortion, and other charges, but not murder.

“There were a lot of things we never got answers on his involvement with corrupt FBI agents and many other murders he might have been involved in. But for me, I know his role in the murder in Tulsa, of Mr. Wheeler,” said Huff.

Bulger was transferred Monday to a federal prison in West Virginia. The Bureau of Prisons said Bulger was "found unresponsive" in his cell Tuesday morning and despite life-saving measures, he was pronounced dead. An investigation is underway into whether Bulger was murdered in custody.

“An evil guy got what he was due. I don't condone murder, but I'm not surprised by it either,” said Huff.

Bulger was 89 and by chance during the transfer between prisons was in Oklahoma City last week. The Boston Globe reports there is a suspect in his murder, another inmate with ties to the mob.