Houston – It’s a Houston criminal case involving a dentist that made international headlines. A husband was murdered by his wife in a hotel parking lot after he was caught cheating. For the latest episode of ‘The Evidence Room’, we take you inside the Harris County evidence room to look inside boxes from the Clara Harris murder case.
You’ll also hear from Investigator Amy Davis who had the chance to speak with Clara Harris, now that she is out of prison.
Who is Clara Harris?
Clara Harris is the Friendswood dentist who ran over and killed her husband outside a Nassau Bay hotel in 2002. A jury found her guilty of murder. The infamous video from the case prosecutors say showed Harris driving in circles over her husband David Harris.
Harris was released from prison in 2018 to serve the last five years of her 20-year sentence on probation. Her probation ended in February of this year (2023).
A few weeks ago Amy Davis knocked on her door. She answered it and let Amy in. Amy explained this docuseries to her and told her she really wanted to speak with her on camera. They spoke for about an hour at her dining room table. Harris has served her time. While there are things she wants the public to know, that doesn’t outweigh her desire for privacy. In the end, she decided not to do an on-camera interview.
The Clara Harris case
Clara Harris was a Colombian immigrant who ran a successful dental practice in Lake Jackson.
Her husband David Harris was an orthodontist with his own practice in Clear Lake City. He traveled to Clara’s office twice a week to work there. The two seemed to have the perfect marriage raising twin boys and David’s teenage daughter from a previous marriage in a large home in Friendswood. But on the night of July 24, 2002, all of that changed.
Investigator Amy Davis and Robert Arnold took a trip out to the hotel parking lot where Clara murdered her husband. Ironically this Nassau Bay Hilton is also where Clara and David were married 10 years earlier.
Here’s what Amy Davis had to say about her talk with Clara:
“Clara told me David had confessed that he was having an affair with his receptionist. He promised to end it with the other woman over dinner.
Clara was suspicious so she hired a private investigator to follow David on that night. Instead of a restaurant the private investigator found David and his mistress at the hotel. She called Clara to let her know. And that’s when Clara raced here with David’s 16-year-old daughter in tow. The person at the front desk told them that neither David nor his mistress Gail Bridges were registered at the hotel.”
Evidence photos show the aftermath of what happened in the hotel parking lot
Pictures in the evidence box show what happened in the hotel parking lot. Harris walked into the parking lot of the hotel and found the woman’s black Lincoln Navigator.
Evidence photos show the damage where Clara Harris keyed the other woman’s SUV. She also ripped the rear window wiper blade off and bend the front window wipers.
Clara and Lindsay both called David on his cell phone and told him that one of his children was sick to lure him downstairs. They waited near the hotel entrance until they saw David and the woman (Gail Bridges) leaving a hotel elevator holding hands.
Scuffle in the hotel lobby before the murder
That first call to 9-1-1 was from a hotel operator reporting Clara and the mistress Gail Bridges fighting in the lobby. The hotel staff broke it up and asked Clara to leave. [Hear all of the 9-1-1 calls from that night in ‘The Evidence Room’ episode.]
But when she returned to her car, she saw David and Bridges at the mistress’s SUV. That’s when Clara drove straight towards it. The private investigator was across the parking lot recording with a handheld video camera. Clara’s Mercedes Benz hit David Harris. The video starts after that impact, but prosecutors argued what the video shows is Clara running in circles over David’s body, three times.
Ultimately the jury believed the prosecutors - that Clara intentionally murdered her husband.
In 2018, then KPRC reporter Taisha Walker talked with Bobbi Bacha from Blue Moon Investigators. Using a mini-cassette recorder Bacha recorded the conversation she had with Clara the day after she bonded out of jail for the murder. Bacha asked why Clara showed up to the hotel unannounced and at one point Clara asked her for a refund.
Also in the evidence box are relationship books. “Getting back together - how to create a new, loving relationship with your old partner and make it last” and “Relationship Rescue - a seven-step strategy for reconnecting with your partner.”
February 14, 2003, sentenced to 20 years in prison. This is the max sentence allowed by the jury’s “crime of passion” finding. As mentioned above, Harris was released from prison in 2018 and her probation ended in February of this year.
You can watch ‘The Evidence Room’ featuring the Clara Harris murder on Wednesday, July 13 at 6:30 p.m. on KPRC 2+
Four ways to watch KPRC 2+ at any time:
- Search for the KPRC 2+ app on your smart TV or streaming device - including Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire, and Google TV.
- Get the new KPRC 2+ mobile app - which is free to download in the App Store or on Google Play.
- Watch at Click2Houston.com/watchlive.
- Look for the KPRC 2+ livestream in the “Watch Live” section of the Click2Houston news app.