A police diver combed the lake behind the house. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)
A police diver combed the lake behind the house. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Elderly man tried to get away with killing wife

By Tracy-Lynn Ruiters Time of article published Nov 28, 2021

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A day after the launch of the 16 Days of Activism, murder accused William Carter made a brief appearance in the Western Cape High Court on Friday.

Carter, 73, allegedly staged a crime scene to look like a burglary where his estranged wife, Franziska “Fran” Carter was murdered last year in October.

Weekend Argus broke the news of the murder at the couple’s upmarket home in Marina Da Gama, Muizenberg.

At the time, Carter spoke to Weekend Argus from his hospital bed.

The father of two, said he had been informed in hospital that his wife of 26 years, had been killed.

He said they were attacked by two men in their home in the quiet, waterside suburb and that he ended up in hospital after being shot in the stomach.

It later emerged that Carter was allegedly the mastermind in this murder, staging the break-in, killing his 66 year-old ex-wife by beating her with a metal bar and stabbing her to death and then inflicting injury to his person.

According to Eric Ntabazalila, spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority, the state will argue that Carter should be found guilty of murder and defeating the ends of justice.

The state will argue that the murder was planned, or premeditated, and that a minimum sentence of life imprisonment is therefore applicable.

It was also brought to light that the couple had in 2015 separated and that the accused subsequently moved out and the deceased continued living at the house.

In February last year, Carter returned to South Africa to finalise their divorce, from the US where he had been staying.

On October 16 last year, Carter went to the residence without the deceased’s knowledge, occupying a flat on the property.

That evening, the accused entered the main house. He allegedly killed his estranged wife by bludgeoning her to death with a metal bar and stabbing her in the back.

Fran Carter was found murder with a knife in her back

The documents further explain that after killing his wife, the accused staged the crime scene in order for it to appear as if a home invasion had taken place.

In an attempt to appear to be a victim of the home invasion, the accused then shot himself.

The accused, thereafter, called his mistress and informed her that he had been shot. She in turn, informed his daughters.

In the early hours of the following morning, a security officer and the police accompanied the accused’s daughter, where she found her mother’s body on the kitchen floor. A knife was stuck in her mother’s back.

When the injured Carter was discovered, he pretended that he and the deceased were victims of a house robbery.

Carter was taken to hospital and received treatment for the gunshot wound.

William Carter

The subsequent investigation of the scene found inconsistencies with the version that the accused had presented to the police.

The accused was arrested for murder of his wife at the Constantiaberg Mediclinic, Plumstead.

After his arrest, the accused furnished a statement and provided a different account as to how the deceased had died.

A post mortem examination, which was conducted on the body of the deceased, determined that the cause of death was a combination of a blunt force injury to the head and a stab wound to the back.

The case was postponed until 18 February 2022 for pre-trial.

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