There has been a major break in the murder case of a Columbus County woman. The Columbus County Sheriff's Office has arrested and charged a man with first-degree murder is in the case of Carol Batten Dowless. The man in custody is the victim's husband, Jamie Lee Dowless. The charges follow Monday's positive identification of her remains. The remains were found within weeks of putting up a billboard with her picture. The positive identification of Carol Batten Dowless' remains brings little closure to her friends and family. “When I go to bed tonight, my mama's not coming back. When I wake up in the morning she's not going to be there,” said Denise Batten, Carol’s daughter. While they now know it was in fact her body found in a wooded area in Chadbourn, questions still remains. Carol’s father, Roger Batten said, “I want to know why and everything that brought this on. I don't want to have no secret having to wonder how it happened or nothing like that.” A billboard unveiled September 10th, played a key part in generating tips as to where her body might be. “That was a real big help. We waited three years and within twenty days of the bill board going up we knew,” said Mr. Batten. Within just 16 days of its unveiling, the Columbus County Sheriff's Office found Dowless' remains about a quarter mile from her family home. That two weeks cracked a three year, missing persons case. The Cue Center for Missing Persons raised more a thousand dollars for the billboard. “Billboards kind-of replace that effort where you’re constantly putting out posters. It is a great effort, but after weather and time, they get taken down. A billboard sort of replaces that because it’s in your face and it’s life-sized,” said Monica Caison of the Cue Center. The billboard is being credited by Columbus County detectives with helping lead to a suspect in this three-year-old case. Columbus County coroner said he can not determine the exact cause of Carol Dowless' death, but that foul play had been definitely involved.
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