(VitalNews.org) – A 78-year-old man has been arrested for the murder and dismemberment of his 80-year-old wife after human remains were found in three different suitcases in Florida. A concerned passerby called 911 after spotting the unusual items in the Intracoastal Waterway near Delray Beach, which is situated approximately 30 miles north of Fort Lauderdale.
The grisly find prompted a multi-agency investigation, with police asking the public for information regarding the identity of the remains. Initially, the body was described as a middle-aged woman of either Hispanic or white ethnicity. Through dental records, the body was able to be identified later as Aydil Barbosa Fontes, wife of William Lowe Jr., who has since been charged with first-degree murder.
Witness statements made to the police described a middle-aged white man who had been seen looking at a suitcase in the water multiple times over several days, even taking a long pole to try to push it away from land. One of the suitcases bore the name “Latim Barbosa MIA” and another had a tag that almost exactly matched the dead woman’s name: “A Barbosa ontes.” Sheriff Javier Salazar told reporters that although the killer had added rocks and an ashtray to the luggage in order to weigh it down, very little effort had been made in the disposal of his victim.
After obtaining a warrant, police searched the home that the couple shared just 0.1 miles away from where the first suitcase was located and found blood throughout the apartment, along with a handgun and cleaning materials. Lowe pleaded ignorance to the police, saying that his wife had been in Brazil for a few weeks. When questioned, he admitted that he did not know which flight she had taken, and could not say when exactly he had last spoken to her. Police also searched a storage unit connected to Lowe, where they found a chainsaw with human hair, bone, flesh, and blood on it.
Aydil Barbosa Fontes was killed with a single gunshot to the back of her head, before being dismembered and placed into suitcases. Lowe has been charged with murder and for abuse of the body and is being held with no chance of bail. He has entered a plea of “not guilty.”
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