Business owner and former Guthrie councilman, Daniel Triplett, 68, of Guthrie, Oklahoma murdered his employee, Brent Mack, 51, and buried him under a newly installed septic tank that Triplett’s company had just installed.
The Life of Brent Mack
Brent Mack was born on October 16, 1970, to Wendell and Lois Jordan Mack. He was a graduate of Guthrie High School where he had been a talented athlete. He was a father to three grown children and spent his off-time riding horses and fishing. At the time of his death, he was in a committed relationship with a woman named Lashon Hersey.
The Disappearance of Brent Mack
Brent Mack was reported missing to the Guthrie Police Department on September 28, 2021. Raychelle Wilson, Brent’s daughter, filed the report. Since September 20, 2021, no one had seen or heard from Brent, according to Raychelle. Raychelle claimed she had contacted Dan Triplett, Brent’s boss, over Facebook Messenger to inquire about Brent. Dan allegedly told Raychelle that he fired Brent on September 20, 2021, and left him in front of the Holiday Laundry on Cleveland Street. Dan disclosed to Raychelle that he provided Brent with a cash severance payment of $1,000. Raychelle claimed that Dan later deleted the communications he had written to her, but she gave detectives images of the correspondence that had not yet been lost.
The Search for Brent Mack
Nancy Chappel Simpson discovered a bag containing Brent’s work clothes in the backyard of their house, which is at the intersection of 1st Avenue and Cleveland. Investigators discussed the bag with Vance and Nancy Simpson. The bag was put there on September 20, 2021, according to Nancy, who said that she observed it there at least two days before she left town on September 22, 2021. After being hurled over the Simpsons’ modest fence on the west side of their property, Vance Simpson showed detectives where the bag had ended up.
Raychelle gave investigators access to her father’s cell phone call history. Brent’s everyday activity was recorded in the log up to September 20, 2021, over the full period covered by it. He spoke to his girlfriend, Lashon Hersey, on his last cell call.
Investigators spoke with Lashon Hersey regarding Brent’s disappearance. She told them that she had spoken to Brent every day since their relationship had begun over four months prior. She stated that the last time that she had spoken to him was the morning of September 20, 2021. Brent had told her that he was waiting for his ride to pick him up to go to work. A short time later, he sent her a text message that said that he was on the job site and that the service was spotty but that he would talk to her later that day. That was around 1:00 p.m. That was the last time that she had heard from him.
he Investigation into Daniel Triplett
Investigators began looking into the information that had been provided by Brent’s daughter, Raychelle. They could review the surveillance video from Holiday Laundry. They could also view the security footage from the Guthrie Public Library, which was located across the street.
Both sets of footage captured Triplett’s vehicle at approximately 7:45 p.m. on September 20, but the footage clearly showed that Triplett did not stop at the Holiday Laundry. It further showed that Triplett was the only person in the vehicle.
Investigators questioned Triplett about Brent’s disappearance. Triplett stated he had fired Brent because he was uncomfortable with Brent’s alleged violent behavior. He explained Brent had worked for him at his construction company off and on for a few years. Triplett said that the last job site that day was on County Road 69 in Crescent, OK. At the end of the workday, he gave Brent $1,000 and dropped him off at the Holiday Laundry. He said that Brent told him he wasn’t mad at getting fired and that he was going to leave the area and travel to Texas to marry his girlfriend. Triplett stated Brent exited his truck with an olive-green Army-style duffle bag.
Detectives executed a search warrant for documents from Daniel Triplett’s construction business. They located the invoices and recorded payment for the Crescent, OK job site but noticed a discrepancy. Triplett’s last job site was not in Crescent, as he had stated. They found that his last job site was installing a septic tank at a residence on W. County Road 69 in Mulhall, OK.
Investigators contacted the property owner in Mulhall and were told that Triplett had completed the job on September 20 and had been paid. Triplett’s records confirmed that fact. There was enough probable cause to justify a search warrant for the Mulhall job site. The Mulhall homeowner openly cooperated with authorities and provided the home security footage that showed two people arriving at the property in Triplett’s work vehicle.
The Discovery of Brent Mack
Detectives watched hours of security footage provided by the Mulhall homeowner. The footage shows the two men going about their workday. It shows them digging to prepare for the septic tank installation. It shows them having their lunch break. After lunch, the footage captures Brent traversing into the hole to prepare the area for placing the tank while Triplett was operating his backhoe (tractor). The footage does not show Brent leaving there, but it shows Triplett installing the tank, backfilling the hole, and leaving the property alone.
On October 21, 2021, detectives and agents from the Guthrie Police Department, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, and the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office excavated the septic tank and discovered Brent Mack’s body several feet below the tank resting place. His identification was in his pants pocket. The medical examiner’s office conducted an autopsy and discovered what appeared to be a “projectile in the chest cavity with an entry wound in the upper left back.”
The Arrest and Conviction of Daniel Triplett
On October 21, 2021, authorities arrested Daniel Triplett at his home at 6101 S Sooner Road, Guthrie, OK. His charges were Murder in the First Degree, and Desecration of a Human Corpse. He was granted a bond of $500,000, which shocked the community because of the severity of the charges. Triplett violated that bond on three separate occasions, with two being on December 15, 2021, and one being on January 4, 2022. Special Judge Susan Worthington would later revoke his bond because of the violations and public outcry.
Triplett’s trial began on April 17, 2023. He was found guilty of all the charges relating to the death of Brent Mack.
On June 16, 2022, Daniel Triplett was given a sentence of Life without Parole, plus an additional seven years of first-degree murder and desecration of a human corpse. Triplett initially stated that his motive was self-, but that was proven inaccurate based on the security footage. No motive has ever been made public.