54 Responses to Shirley Carter

  1. Dorrie says:

    I think it is so sad that Bill Carter will most likely never get official confirmation as to the guilt of his son, Jason. It seems obvious that with competent investigative procedures this case would be closed.
    As it stands the guilty party must live with himself and know that his actions will be judged by the Almighty. I wonder if the internal guilt eats away at him.

  2. Norah says:

    What’s bizaare, which absolutely no one has explained, is why on a 9-1-1 call, the son, who is not a medical examiner or coroner, puts his mom’s death at 2 hours ago. That right there is so incredibly bizarre that I am surprised that the police didn’t interrogate Jason on it. And why did he call others before calling 9-1-1?? Another thing is that the propensity to start “crying” almost on queue. Also, the female-like screeching that Jason does, such as on the 9-1-1 call. I could understand anger and yelling, but the screeching voice at 3 raised octaves is waaaay over the top, a bit dramatic for a grown man, especially a man who thinks he’s got big enough balls that he can have an extramarital affair.

  3. Michelle Christie says:

    Just watched Accused, I believe the ‘evidence’ doesn’t prove or disprove John. The whole time I was leaning towards the father Bill’s involvement but I don’t think that was clear cut either. I think the whole investigation was conducted with tunnel vision and Ludwick/Ludwig (whatever his name) was embarrassing and proved he never followed up because he went with his own judgement! Not facts! I personally don’t believe Jason committed this crime.

    • Paula Jones says:

      I agree fully. Sadly once tunnel vision becomes the direction of any case the evidence does not take the investigator/s in the right direction. This case may never truly be solved because Ludwig’s tunnel vision meant that many issues were not followed up on and quite possibly evidence was ignored that didn’t fit his theory.
      As someone who studied Criminology, I struggle to understand his thinking and his processes. Whether a Cold Case Team could solve this case is something that without all the complete facts is doubtful
      So many lives have been ruined completely because of this very sad case. Not only did they loose a wife, mother, daughter, sister etc but false accusations hang over all involved as long as the true culprit is not caught, send to trial and found guilty. My prayer is that the Police finally do their job right and start from scratch with open hearts and minds and follow only the evidence to it rightful conclusion.

    • Chris says:

      So clearly not the father but feel free to point fingers.

  4. Rnickel says:

    Jason’s attorneys solved the case on A&E in 2021 where is the updated case information 😩

  5. Tara says:

    What about Jasons wife? My theory is they planned it and it was all about money. She killed mom, staged it, crossed arms and legs and left. Then Jason shows up to call it in 2 hours later with an alibi.

    • Tara says:

      In addition that is why Shelly was so opposed to Jason taking the plea deal, because she was worried he would end up breaking his silence about who really pulled the trigger. The affair didn’t matter at that point.

    • Minnie Mouse says:


  6. William Holder says:

    The staging of the scene to resemble a “robbery” where nothing was missing save the murder weapon and that the body was also staged strongly suggests to me the killer was a family member, either the husband or one of the two sons. The killer didn’t bring a weapon but knew there was a gun safe in the basement and retrieved the murder weapon from there. It seems clear Jason was not the killer since video places him far away at the time of the murder. Comment from family member above indicates husband was also far away at the time of the murder. That leaves Billy Dean Carter. Where was he that morning – why was he never a suspect? Can any other family members be implicated or have motive? And Jason’s wife, she seems 100% convinced from the beginning that Jason wasn’t involved – not the slightest doubt. Is there a reason she is so sure? It’s baffling to me that this remains a cold case and that not a shred of physical evidence was ever found.

    • doofy says:

      im sure the police have thought about this as many others have also. maybe there isnt quite enough evidence to move forward……yet

    • William Holder says:

      I just watched the A&E Accused Guilty or Innocent series episode about this case. Presented from the defendents point of view. It elaborates on a very generous plea deal offered by the state and statements by others implicating the Followill brothers. At this point I am convinced that not only is Jason not culpable it is likely neither are any family members. It is upsetting that his life has been greatly impacted and that he is being held responsible with no further appeal possible for a 10.2M civil judgement against him.

      • Jay says:

        Billy was at work. I worked with him, and remember the day he found out about his Mom being killed. He was devastated. Hi alibi was checked a million times, and verified by several people who interacted with him at work the days leading up to the crime, and the day of.

      • Paula Jones says:

        I am in agreement with William Hilder, Jason is innocent. The last person to see Shirley alive and m concern here is why would he do everything to blame his son. I am not blaming anyone because to jump to conclusions is exact what has damaged so many lives.
        Without doubt I do believe that the Police made three crucial mistakes
        1. They told the Billy they had someone they were looking at and would be laying charges within weeks. Of course the famiily were going to get frustrated. How Jason got a fair trial is testament to the wonderful jury.
        2. The Police did not follow the evidence. They made an assumption and without doubt attempted to make the evidence fit their conclusion.
        3. There were a number of clues that the Police didn’t follow to their conclusions. They were so harassed by Jason’s and I think the Civil Judgement left them looking inadequate So they jumped on that banned wagon, a case that leaves a loving parent wondering why he would deliberately push to blame his own son.
        Personally as a Criminologist I would love to see all the evidence as heart breaks for Jason and his family, he has been found innocent by a court of Law, yet his own self righteous family have found his guilty….why, because he had an affair. Something that had nothing to do with his parents. There is far more to this story and all parties, especially Shirley deserve someone to investigate this from an open mind.

    • Retha says:

      As I was looking up information on the case, I came across testimonies of those involved in the case. Billy Carter was supposedly at work when his mother was killed, but I have no clue if his alibi checked out. From the follow up episode, the rumors of others being involved was investigated by Jason’s attorneys. They found a truck that was possibly seen in the area, plus the phone belonging to someone of interest pinged off the closest tower to the Carter farm at 9:23am (or very close to that time, as I don’t recall the exact time they said). Sounds to me like the police have some work to do. I truly find it difficult to believe that Jason or his wife were involved. His brother is extremely weird though, but weirdness doesn’t indicate guilt.

  7. CM says:

    Husband did it. Two thoughts. 1) Based on Bill’s comment about finding out that Jason had an affair, he said ‘We (he and Shirley) did something wrong’. That is a comment based on morality. He felt there was a failure on their part in raising Jason. As a moral man, he may have believed he could do no wrong, and place the blame entirely on his wife. This also sounds familiar with the reports that Bill was a very controlling husband. 2) Where’s the rifle? Husband claims the son hid the rifle somewhere on the property, and retrieved it later to get rid of it. Couldn’t the husband do the exact same thing? Husband had more opportunity to get ride of the gun along the stretch of roads during his traveling to sell the grain. Or on his return. 3) Spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to investigate the son is a sign of deflection/guilt. He essentially blamed the son for the death of his wife, because he thought it was her fault that their son had an affair. And 4) most important. It is HIGHLY unlikely that a son who just murdered his mother in cold blood would EVER touch her body to carefully place her hands crossed over her chest
    THAT is something that a husband/lover/significant other would do. Basically placing a loved one “at rest’. Jmho

  8. Tim says:

    I think Jason Carter killed his mother he needs to be in prison for the rest of his life

    • Stay Strong, Fight for Justice! says:

      Wow, great family alright…

      Some farming families are ruthless and very greedy. My in-laws are farmers and are great people, However, I’ve seen enough from their more distant relatives, neighboring farming families, landlords & tenants to know millions of dollars in farmland corrupts.

    • Jean says:

      OMG was Junior ever fully investigated? and was about the sister? she stated that she told Jason he needed to call 911, but she called her father. she didn’t call 911 to report in right away either. The whole thing is strange. Shirley Carter will not rest in peace until the truth is found out.

  9. Debbie says:

    I have watched this case in the past and watched again tonight. I think that Jason Carter killed his mother. I watch cases all the time. I find that infidelity is a common denominator in a lot of cases like this. If his mother had learned of his affair and his knowing that his inheritance could be in jeopardy, I think he could definitely kill her before she told his father. But, a statement he made in passing was a key for me. He said that when his brother left home, his dad forced him to do all the chores his brother left behind even though he felt he was too young to carry the load. I think he resented that, and he felt he was entitled to the land and money he would inherit. He would have gone on cheating and living his life had his mother not gotten in his way. He wasn’t going to take the chance of his father finding out and taking him out of the will. I think he knew too much when he called 911. I don’t think the judge told the jury to find him innocent. I do think the police did a lousy job of investigating the crime. If they had done their job, the truth probably would have come out.

  10. Ravin Jessop says:

    I think the father did it why would he try and commit suicide not once but twice come on now

    • Cindy says:

      I totaly agree. He was the last person to see her before the son found her.

      • Linnette says:

        Cindy, Ravin, Tracy, and whomever else is implying the father, he’d husband was the last to see/hear/talk to/know she was alive. You need to know 2 things about the father/husband/Bill Sr. When he left the house after getting coffee with her, he inadvertently pulled out in front of his neighbor at 7:41AM. (Neighbor testified to being looking at the time on his car click, and further more, he continues to drive behind Bill Sr. to the gravel and then highway, North and East (where Bill Sr. picks up his semi, at a farm in Pleasantville, approx. 15 miles from home).
        So give or take we are now at about 7:55-8:00AM.
        Bill checked his semi tires as always is his practice with a hammer. (To some, this may sound different, but if you’re old school, or even taught by an old schooler on semi grain hauling, this is common. You hit each of the “18 wheels” with a hammer to see they are solid, check lights and note any fluid leaks, safety for transport. Basically it is a quick walk around. He says his semi is loaded from the day before with corn, ready to go to Cargill, about 50-60 minutes away to deliver grain. He states he waited a few moments for the diesel to run, not a long time, because it is was a sunny day, warm, 6/19/15. He then pulls out, and heads to Cargill with his own set goal of 9:00 AM arrival. The camera at Cargill shows him pulling in the gates at 9:01AM.
        Meanwhile, Shirley (wife, mom) has filled out a voting ballot for the Iowa Corn Board voting for Donny Hunerdose. Why? Because they’d seen Donny at Casey’s when they got coffee, prior to Bill Sr. taking Shirley back home. Donny tells them he hopes he doesn’t mind that he sent them a ballot and would appreciate their vote. They tell him no problem, and Shirley tells Donny she will fill it out right when she gets home.
        Then, she apparently notices there’s a number to call the vote in. She removes the stamp from the already filled out envelope (the stamp is on the desk, the ballot and envelope are found in the kitchen trash by her daughter and turned over to DCi/Sherriff’s.).
        KEY **Between 8:44AM, and 8:47AM, Shirley makes FIVE calls to two phone numbers from their HOME phone and submits their vote on the phone (records and testimony in criminal trial by the Corn Board Rep of the received vote and copy of the Corn board’s records. Also, the Home phone company records 5 dialed calls to the 2 numbers for that time period. Short calls. She was alive. Bill Sr. Was about 50 minutes away from the home. So he did NOT leave her shot with two high powered rifle shots through her lungs and heart. He did not kill her. I hope this clears some things up. I understand it is difficult to make sense if the timeline if you’re not looking through everything very thoroughly and if you don’t listen to testimony that is crucial, yet was not spelled out and summarized by the prosecutor..unfortunately. I am their niece. My cousin is Jason. If you want clarification like this and it is not sealed, I am willing to offer any answers I can.

        • Theresa Winterling says:

          Murder for hire by Bill Sr

        • F says:

          Still afraid of Bill, Linnette? Or is the inheritance you think is coming your way giving you the courage to persevere?

          • Linnette says:

            Dearest F,
            Inheritance. That’s a terrible thing to say. I’ve never in my life thought I would inherit anything from anyone. This remains true today. Afraid of anyone? Not at all, but thank you for your concern.

          • Linnette says:

            Also, Dearest F. You are so inclined to accuse me of the greed others have, why do you not state your comment with your name? You said my name without issue. Please show the same courage. Thanks.

        • Dorrie says:

          Thank you…this is the most cohesive explanation of time that I have read about this case. I agree that the prosecutor did not cover these details adequately. I think this case should have been solved with a more comprehensive and professional investigation. I appreciate this explanation.

        • L. says:

          Thank you for this insightful response.

          • Linnette says:

            I completely understand. I can only wish I didn’t learn some things about the marriages in my family history on my parents’ families). It’s not all bad, but the things you learn as an adult are very different than what you think as a child. I could have lived without it. Also, it only causes pain to expose those things. It does not seem to help anyone. It’s sad. In many instances, I have learned things about our history I probably could have lived without knowing. 🫶 Be well

  11. Tracy Wilson says:

    I think if Jason was found not guilty I believe his father needs to be looked at. Because i watched the case and believe hes the one that killed her and pointed the finger at his son.

  12. tryright says:

    I just watched the Guilty or Innocent and have 2 questions. Who and what is the Joe person mentioned by the reporting person as admitting he did it? Why would he be going to the Carter home for drugs, wouldn’t anyone who knew them know that Shirley would more than likely be at home in the morning and or Bill?

  13. Jen says:

    We watched the Dateline episode. We are of the opinion that Jason did murder his mom. He shows no tears or emotion, only steadfast adamant behaviour to convince the authorities that he is innocent. He is an adultery plus a murderer. His wife stays……she is nuts! Get yourself a divorce. If the tables were turned, Jason would be long gone!

    • Frank says:

      I think they need to investigate the 3 people that one of the neighbors had told the officer about like the man who told her that he had did the murder the man named joe and the 2 other guys that had helped him why haven’t they been questioned and checked into there had to have been finger prints or something and how can they charge a man for murder when they have no murder weapon just wondering I still think Jason carter is a innocent man and they should do a little more investigation on the joe guy and his 2 buddy’s prayers that the family will realize that the son did not murder his mother and maybe by the grace of the good lord above the father and the rest of the family will maybe just maybe have a heart and realize that the mother wouldn’t want the family to fall apart when wrongly accused of something that wasn’t true I’m sure that the mother would be very very sad to know that the father was treating his own flesh and blood the way he is without any evidence to prove what actually happened to her that day other then what the detectives lead them to believe prayers and love from my family to there’s hopefully someday they can put there family back together

      • Melisa says:


      • Julie S McFarland says:

        I’m with Frank on this one. I’ve always thought the exact same thing.
        And tonight I watched the continuance of the same story.
        I can’t believe they haven’t arrested the real killers of Mrs Carter.
        Bad Police work, and they simply don’t want to take any responsibility.

    • Cindy says:

      The husband was the last one to see her before the son found her. And when the husband got to the house he said aw Shirley and kissed her. I find that a little bizaar. The son was extremly emotional. The husband got all the money when the wife died. Husband planned it.

      • Ash says:

        I agree with you. For some reason I just feel the husband did it and made darn sure the son got blamed for it.

      • BJ says:

        I also agree with you! LE screwed up this case so much I think they created the timeline of her death to match Bills timeline of his movements. I think Bill set up his own son and tried to seal his fate by filing the civil lawsuit way before trial of Jason. Bill thought the civil suit would help get Jason convicted. Ignoring the confession of the brothers as well as not disclosing that info to all parties is criminal. Bill obviously has his favorite children and to heck with the rest. I hope Jason gets Justice.

  14. AnonymousScientist says:

    Throughout this whole ordeal locals have known two things:

    A – Shirley & Bill’s son Jason has a very negative reputation and it wouldn’t be aberrant for him to kill his mother for something he believed was rightly his. This is greatly in line with his reputed personality.

    B – Law enforcement, particularly Sheriff Sandholt, mishandled a great deal of this case that gifted the defense with more than reasonable doubt and allowed Mr. J Carter to be freed of any criminal charges.

    This case will likely never be solved because of double jeopardy laws.

    • Linnette Worthington says:

      It is heartbreaking to know it will go on as “”unsolved”. It is frightening to know we are not safe. I found out the jury didn’t have a choice on the guilty or not guilty given the fact the investigation was awful, including the sheriff tipping off the main dishevt of a search warrant, evidence not collected, lack of following frivolous leads resulted in the jurors as instructed to by the judge, to come back with a not guilty verdict due to a lack of a full investigation.

      None of this so-called expatory evidence was new to the defendant, extended family, his friends, nor his attorneys. As a matter of fact a few of his friends helped create the scenario, whether or not he knew before or after..he knew by December 2015. I am unable to share those publicly as I was not a part of the conversations. It would be illegal for me to do so. It wouldn’t be like getting away with murder, but I’m confident I’d be charged immediately, sued, convicted, and imprisoned. I wish so much I could share all I know.

      My Aunt’s birthday would be June 10th. She was murdered June 19th, 2015, so
      It is a rough time right now for her family.

  15. Mary Hart says:

    M’Thinks Bill Carter protested too much boo hooing over Shirley’s death. Neighbor said he was extremely controlling over even smallest things. While son Jason was said to have a good relationship with his mother, and besides which, how could he inherit farm if only his mother and not father was dead.

    • Stay Strong, Fight For Justice says:

      Regarding your last question, the theory is that his parents were very conservative and would disinherit Jason upon learning of his infidelity; a fact that Shirley recently discovered but had not divulged yet to Bill. Jason’s inheritance would have been secure if he successfully hid his involvement in his mother’s murder so the theory goes.

      He threw it all away and has paid a big price. He will pay a much bigger price in the after life I strongly suspect.

  16. KP says:

    I think there is an editing error. The family name switches to Clark towards the end of the posting.

    • Jody Ewing says:

      KP, thanks for catching that. I found two instances where I’d inadvertently typed the name Clark instead of Carter, and have fixed both of them. So glad you brought this to my attention. All best to you.

  17. C says:

    They got married when she was 15??

    • Jody Ewing says:

      C, yes — according to Shirley’s obituary, she was just a couple of months shy of 16 when she and Bill married. It wasn’t all that uncommon back then, particularly if the parents gave consent. Many of these “young newlyweds” also stayed married for the rest of their natural lives. It’s a wonderful thing seeing couples who’ve been married 50, 60, and sometimes even 70 years.

      • Linnette Castillo says:

        Thank you for clarifying this, Jody. It’s not surprising “C” focuses on her age at the time of marriage. Billy G Carter was 16, just a class ahead of Shirley.

        The uncommon fact is that he worked while finishing high school through half days at the school and the remainder via correspondence to earn his high school diploma and working full time as a butcher and driver to support his young family. He received an ACT score of 29, and turned down college scholarships to be with his young wife.

        Shirley and Billy were still happily married after 52 years, successfully farming and raising their family against all odds.

        As Jody said, the young marriage was not uncommon at the time, but there are also many failed marriages and unwed mothers. The Carters were the exception to the rule due to love, hard work, and the unique ability to stay real, honest, good people, and perseverance.

        • CM says:

          ‘Happily married’ is an opinion. Unless you’re the husband or wife, the happiness of a marriage is never known. Married people only let you see what they want to divulge. And older couples show even less. Because their thought process about marriage is ’til death do us part’. Because that’s how it was way back when. None of that new fangled divorce or separation talk. Married at 16? A life of working a farm? With your spouse 24/7 for decades? Loss of monetary support? Property? Access to children and grandchildren? Not something older folks ever think is possible. Again ’til death us do part’.

          • Retha says:

            It’s very true that you never know what’s really going on behind closed doors. People did marry in their teens quite a bit. But…researching my family history, I can tell you that even in those “long term marriages,” a lot of side stuff went on. A lot of divorces back in the day too, we just didn’t have the massive media we have now to hear about everything that went on.

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