Flood Warning issued October 1 at 10:09AM EDT expiring October 4 at 2:00AM EDT in effect for: Sarasota
Temple Terrace police have charged a 35-year-old Granville Ritchie with first degree murder, capital sexual battery and aggravated child abuse for the death of Felecia Williams.
"At this moment, detectives from the Temple Terrace Police Department are in the process of formally charging Granville Ritchie with the murder of 9-year-old Felicia Williams," announced Temple Terrace Police Chief Ken Albano.
The expression on Felecia William's mother's face told it all.
"Our investigation indicates that Felica suffered ante mortem blunt force trauma to her head, that she was sexually assaulted and that she was ultimately strangled to death," said Chief Albano.
But the worst details about how the 9-year-old died was how her nude body ended up in the water on the north side of the Courtney Campbell Causeway, those details made her mom bow her head and sob.
"Evidence at the scene indicates that Felicia's body had been concealed within a suitcase and dragged from the apartment," said Chief Albano as gasps came from the room.
Detectives won't say if they found the suitcase. The Chief says a look alike of the same brand was seized from 35 year old Granville Ritchie's car.
They also say drag marks and a broken suitcase wheel were found in Ritchie's Temple Terrace apartment along with physical evidence that link his car to Felecia's body.
"Cell site data analysis also received, rather revealed, that Ritchie travelled the area where Felicia's body was recovered and that he remained there for a prolonged period of time," said Chief Albano.
Detectives believe Ritchie and his girlfriend, Eboni Wiley, a family friend of William's Mom, picked up the little girl the day of her murder.
They believe the unspeakable took place in an hour while Wiley ran errands. They say when she came home Ritchie answered the door shirtless and sweating.
Detectives say the two collaborated on a false story to tell police and someone cleaned the apartment.
Police won't reveal if Wiley will face charges too.