REPORT: Carter Co. victim discovered with bullet wounds; Suspect in custody


A joint investigation has landed an Elizabethton man with charges of killing his mother. 

Investigators say John Christopher Ralph was detained at a Georgia airport. 

Ralph is charged with killing his mother, Edith Betty Ralph

According to a police report from the Carter County Sheriff’s Office, officers responded yesterday to Reynolds Road in reference to a dead body. A witness at the home said they were supposed to go to a funeral that day with Mrs. Ralph. Investigators say there was a nail inside the lock of her backdoor. Officers were able to make entry to her home and discovered her corpse with bullet wounds. 

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation issued the following statement below: 

A joint investigation with Special Agents from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and investigators with the Carter County Sheriff’s Office has resulted in the arrest of an Elizabethton man, charged in the death of his mother.

On April 6th, at the request of 1st District Attorney General Ken Baldwin, Agents and investigators were dispatched to 171 Reynolds Road in Elizabethton, after a caregiver reported finding a deceased individual there. The victim was identified as Edith Betty Ralph (DOB 03/03/1943). During the course of the investigation, Agents and deputies developed information that indicated the victim’s son, John Ralph, who lived at the same residence, was the individual responsible for her death.

Saturday night, John Christopher Ralph (DOB 10/14/1967) was detained and arrested by officers with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Marshals Service at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. He is charged with one count of First Degree Murder and currently being held in the Clayton County (GA) Jail on a $1,000,000 bond while awaiting extradition to Tennessee.

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