RCMP make arrest in connection to 2003 murder of Nicolle Hands

Nicolle Hands.
Nicolle Hands. RCMP

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story indicated Hands had been killed by a gunshot.

RCMP have arrested a suspect in connection to a more than 16-year-old homicide cold case.

32-year-old Nicolle Hands was stabbed during the early hours of October 2nd, 2003 while her three children and a babysitter were sleeping in the next room.

READ MORE: Police task force seeks public’s help in cracking 2003 Winnipeg murder case

Nicolle’s mother Eleanor Hands lives in Kingston, Ontario. “I thought an arrest would not be made,” she said, “Although I was encouraged all the time by investigators that there would be.”

In a statement released Saturday, Mounties said an 18-month investigation by Project DEVOTE has resulted in a man being arrested.

Story continues below advertisement

The suspect has not yet been named pending charges being laid.

Eleanor tells Global News that she and Nicolle’s children now have some closure.

“I’m so grateful that they have given me and the kids some peace.”

READ MORE: Winnipeg police announce changes to investigations of MMIWG cases

Project Devote is a partnership between RCMP and Winnipeg Police focusing on Missing and Murdered Indigenous women. Winnipeg Police announced Friday it will no longer have dedicated investigators on the project, instead consolidating resources from various units to liaise with RCMP investigators working on Project Devote cases.