NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY)– In 2017, a man’s body was found in Castle Hayne hours after he was abducted during an armed robbery in Wilmington.
Detectives are still looking for the people responsible for kidnapping and killing Melquan Hicks-Bey, 22 on Nov. 5, 2017.
“No one should have to bury their kids,” Nicole Haskins said.
Nicole Haskins never thought that would be her own reality after she took in 4-year-old Melquan Hicks-Bey and raised him as her own.
“He lived with me from the time he was 4 until well into high school.”
She said they lived in the District of Columbia and Maryland area where she still lives today.
“He didn’t move to Wilmington until he was 16 when his biological mother resurfaced,” Haskins said. “They wanted to get to know each other.”
Haskins said Melquan went back and forth.
“He had several jobs in Wilmington, nothing permanent just being a young man chasing the dream. He wanted to pursue music,” Haskins said.
She said wherever he was, Melquan made an impression.
“He was a ladies’ man, definitely a ladies’ man. He was just full of life,” Haskins said.
Eventually, she said Melquan started a life in the Port City.
“Of course, he has children down there and so some things were just pulling him back,” Haskins said.
At the end of October in 2017, while in Wilmington, Melquan gave Haskins a call.
“Called like he always does to ask for some money,” Haskins said, “So I sent him some money, asked how he was doing. He said he was good and said that he was coming down to Maryland that was the last conversation we ever had.”
The next week, Haskins got another call. This one from Melquan’s biological mom.
“Asking had we heard from him, because she had gotten called saying that he was taken,” Haskins said.
911 Call: “Someone came into my house with guns and took my phone and took somebody else, so basically a kidnapping and robbery.”
Detective Nicholas Lee with the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office said Melquan was the one who was kidnapped.
“The night before Melquan had been out with friends,” Lee said. “He had gone back to a friend’s house there in the 1500 block of South 12th Street. Shortly after arriving home these two men burst into the home with guns.”
Lee said Melquan was the only one taken at gunpoint.
“They did not take the other two people,” Lee said.
Lee said one of them called 911 from a neighbor’s phone.
911 CALL: “When I opened the door it’s two guys with guns pointed at my face and they kept asking me where is the money who has the money. Like they took everything everybody had. “Like, one of them even took my baby out of the crib while he had a gun in his hand.”
Six hours after that call, just after 10 a.m., another 911 call comes in to the sheriff’s office.
“That a body had been found in a wooded area off of Alvernia Drive which runs off of Rock Hill Road in the Castle Hayne area,” Lee said.
Lee said the person had been shot multiple times. The person was identified him as Melquan Hicks-Bey.
“I couldn’t believe it and I couldn’t understand what he could have done that would have gotten him in that situation,” Haskins said.
Detective Lee said they do not know why, but they do think it was intentional.
“When the two men entered the home, they specifically asked for Melquan,” Lee said.
“Do you know if he had any enemies. I mean do you have any idea why?”
“No. He wouldn’t back down from a fight if it was a fight you know so I’m not sure, but none that he expressed to us,” Haskins said.
Now, they need your help finding who.
“Melquan was brutally murdered,” Lee said.
“The same person who killed my son could be out there preparing to kill somebody else’s son,” Haskins said. “He was a good person. He had a warm heart. He loved his family. He loved his friends. He loved his children. He wanted to do right for his kids.”
Kids who were so young at the time, Haskins said they may never remember their father.
“No they won’t know him eventually,” Haskins said. “He’ll be a picture on somebody’s shelf probably.”
Now, detectives need anything you know to help paint the picture of what happened to Melquan Hicks-Bey on Nov. 5, 2017.
“Anybody that saw him or talked to him after 3 a.m. Any of the slightest information that anyone can give us,” Lee said.
“If they have information, they should talk or maybe that person should realize what they’ve done and just come forward. I doubt it, but you know wishful thinking,” Haskins said.
If you have any information, please contact the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office.