In the early morning hours of November 13, 1983, a motorist discovered a battered body in the middle of the 1700 block of Depot Avenue. It was an isolated road leading to the Delray Beach train station. Three days later they identified her as Carla Lowe, age 21.
Her 1963 Mercury Comet was found parked a few blocks away. She was going to catch a train to go see her sister in Tennessee. Her identity was confirmed by fingerprints and dental records.
The medical examiner determined a blunt object was used to beat her to death, and several blows were made to her head. She was also run over.
Carla didn't have any enemies or disputes with another person that could point to a possible motive for her murder. Police searched for witnesses to what happened but couldn't find anyone, and the case grew cold.
In January 2021, the Delray Beach cold case unit was established, and few weeks ago they got a hit using a new fingerprint technology that led them to a man named Ralph Williams.
On November 29, 2021, almost 38 years to the day of Carla's murder, a Palm Beach grand jury indicted Williams for the 1983 crime. He was arrested in Jacksonville where he now lives. He was charged with first-degree murder with a weapon, and is being held without bond.
There was no connection between the victim and Williams, and the reason why he murdered her is unknown at this time.
According to the NY Post, investigators believe Willams attacked Lowe while she waited for the train. On the day the body was found Williams was arrested on grand theft auto and burglary charges, but no connection was made to the brutal murder.
The Delray Beach police chief said, "This is the exact reason why the cold-case position was initiated earlier this year, to help bring some level of closure to the families who have lost any hope of justice for their losses."
Hopefully Carla Lowe and her family will get the justice they've been waiting for.
Stranger Than Fiction Stories by Marlene Pardo Pellicer