77ºF

15-year-old charged in killing of Oakland Park woman

Nicole Franco, 19, found dead inside home after apparent burglary

OAKLAND PARK, Fla. – A 15-year-old boy has been arrested in connection with the killing of 19-year-old Nicole Franco inside her Oakland Park apartment.

D'Marcus Tucker is charged with one count of first-degree murder.

Franco was found dead June 3 inside her home at the Bridgewater Place Apartments at 2800 NW 44th St.

Broward Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Dani Moschella said Franco called 911 to report a burglary at her apartment, but she didn't give a precise address.

Deputies arrived at the complex and went door-to-door looking for evidence of a crime. Eventually they stumbled upon an open sliding-glass door at Franco's first-floor apartment and called out to her, but there was no response. Once inside, deputies found Franco's body.

Tucker, who was one of Franco's neighbors, allegedly was armed with a knife from Franco's kitchen when he went into her bedroom searching for cash and jewelry.  Deputies said Franco was asleep at the time, but Tucker woke her up after he accidentally stepped on her purse and made a noise.

Deputies said Tucker stabbed Franco once in the chest and ran from the room. They said he then watched from the doorway as she reached for her cellphone and called 911. In the call, Franco is heard crying out "No," one time before the call drops.

Deputies said Tucker threw Franco's wallet in the lake behind her apartment. DNA evidence found on Franco's comforter led detectives to Tucker, who was already being held in a juvenile facility in Fort Myers on an unrelated charge.

He is being held at the Lee County Sheriff's Office Jail and is awaiting transfer to Broward County.

Follow Andrew Perez on Twitter @PerezLocal10

Follow Local 10 News on Twitter @WPLGLocal10


About the Authors: