Did the events of September 11th prevent the solving of a murder in a close-knit Rhode Island town? Nicole Parsons Bucki was murdered on 9/11, and her death staged to look like a suicide. It’s been 20 years and her killer has still never been brought to justice.
With the media focus across the nation on the events at Ground Zero, the details of Nicole Parsons Bucki’s horrific September 11, 2001 murder and staged suicide was buried in the headlines.
Nicole was a young mother, daughter and friend. Often described as having a million dollar smile. Nicole was living in Providence, Rhode Island in September of 2001, and while a remember 9/11 as a day that changed the nation, for the Parsons family it would be the day their daughter was found brutally killed–her murder still unsolved.
The day Nicole was killed
Approximately 72 hours before her death, Nicole was seen arguing with her ex-boyfriend. She had bruises all over her, and was allegedly dragged from her apartment building and locked out of her apartment. Days following, many of Nicole’s neighbors would report seeing her ex-boyfriend outside of her apartment demanding to be let in to retrieve his belongings. Nicole did not let him into her apartment and the police were called and a no verbal contact order was filed. However, neighbors would later report that within hours of her murder, he was seen trying to gain access to her apartment.
When she was discovered
Just after midnight on September 11, 2001, two of Nicole’s neighbors gained access to her home and discovered her body. The police were immediately called. Nicole’s death was initially thought to be a suicide because she was found in her bathtub, fully clothed with a hairdryer connected to a nearby extension cord. However, her case would be ruled a homicide after her autopsy discovered Nicole had water in her nasal cavity, had signs of strangulation, and her pancreas was hemorrhaged by blunt force trauma, and absolutely no signs of electrocution. Her live-in boyfriend's nickname “Huggie” would also be crudely, but freshly tattooed on her body. Could immediate local news attention have helped bring her murderer to justice? Did the wall-to-wall coverage of the terrorist attacks that day hinder the investigation from a media standpoint in this small town?
Where the case stands today
While Nicole’s ex-boyfriend received multiple charges for domestic violence and violating orders of protection, he has not been directly linked to her murder. Nicole’s family continues to advocate for justice in her murder and asks for the public’s help to come forward with details that can help solve her case. A renewed push late last year, included a public plea from the Rhode Island Police Department for anyone who can help them ‘crack this cold case’ to come forward.
Can you help solve Nicole's murder?
There is currently a reward of $1,000 for any information leading to an arrest of a suspect. Please contact Det. Otrando, at the Providence Police Department or Crime Stoppers of Rhode Island.