Who is the anonymous caller that witnessed the murder of a young woman?
On May 1, 1991, a man called 911 and told a Miami police operator that he had just witnessed a horrible crime in the town of Belle Glade, 80 miles to the south. In a rushed, nervous voice, the caller said he was hunting illegally in a sugar cane field, when he heard a car in the distance. The man said that as he ran to hide, a blue Ford Bronco pulled up with two men and a women inside. One man appeared to be Cuban, and the other Mexican, by the way he spoke. The woman, who was black, called one of the men Ricardito. They argued about what appeared to be drugs and money. When she told them she could not give them the money, they killed her with a machete. The eyewitness told the 911 operator that the Bronco’s license plate number contained the numbers seven and two.
Perhaps fearing for his safety, the eyewitness had waited more than a week before contacting police. He never revealed his identity, but he provided them with enough clues to begin their investigation. The caller said that the sugar cane field was behind a building shaped like a giant ice cream cone. The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Department sent Detective Duane Mayo to investigate:
Crime scene investigator Sergeant Detective Mark Lewis was called to the scene:
Rebecca Young was a 21 year-old resident of Belle Glade. In a terrible coincidence, her mother had also been murdered when Rebecca was just 12 years-old. At that time, she went to live with her aunt, Lucille Williams:
Police looked into Rebecca’s background and discovered she had become involved with a man known to be a petty criminal. According to Det. Mayo:
Police determined that the man was not a suspect in Rebecca’s murder, but believed that his activities may have led to her death. On May 14, 1991, three weeks after Rebecca’s murder, the sheriff’s department arrested a possible suspect. He was a local man who reportedly told a prostitute that he had killed a black woman. When police pulled him over, they suspected that he was drunk or stoned. Det. Mayo interviewed him:
Even though the suspect was released, police believed he was somehow involved in Rebecca’s murder. But they needed proof, so they searched for the eyewitness who originally called to report the crime. Not much was known about the man, except that his name was Antonio and he said he called from a pay phone because he didn’t have a line at home. Judging from Antonio’s accent, police believed he was born in Cuba.
This crime remains unsolved and the authorities hope Antonio, or any other witnesses, will come forward with more information.