Man suspected of a sword murder in South Beach confesses to at least six other murders
The man suspected of a grisly sword murder in South Beach has confessed to at least six other murders across the country, authorities said Wednesday.
Nicholas Brent Gibson, 32, a convicted sex offender, said he’d committed the murders “during earlier times in his life” in Florida, Georgia and California, according to Miami Beach police. Detectives, however, are just starting to investigate whether the confessions are actually true.
“We are evaluating the information he has provided. We will be working with law enforcement in these locations in an attempt to determine the credibility of his statements,” Miami Beach police spokesman Ernesto Rodriguez said in a statement released Wednesday afternoon. “This will be a lengthy process. At this time we cannot corroborate what Mr. Gibson has told us about his involvement in any of the other murders.”
The surprise revelation by police came three days after Gibson was arrested in New York City after a scuffle with a transit officer.
Gibson was wanted in the April murder of 77-year-old Erik Stocker, whose mutilated and badly decomposed corpse was discovered inside his apartment in the 1500 block of Michigan Avenue. Police said the body was in the apartment for at least 10 days before neighbors called police to complain about the foul odor.
A source familiar with the investigation said it was an unusually gory scene and that Stocker was killed by some type of sword.
Miami Beach detectives quickly identified the main suspect as Gibson, who was also wanted by federal authorities for failing to register as a sex offender. When investigators learned Gibson had traveled to New York City, they flew north to help police there find him.
Transit police spotted him Sunday on a train platform and he tried fighting the officers as he was taken into custody. He confessed in New York City, police say, and is awaiting extradition to South Florida.
According to Miami Beach police, Gibson “admitted to his involvement in the murder of Mr. Stocker.” Physical evidence was also discovered to support charging Gibson with murder, according to police.
Gibson has a long record with the law, court records show.
In 2000, when he was still a juvenile, Gibson was convicted in Illinois for aggravated sexual assault. He was sent to a juvenile prison for seven years, and placed on an Illinois sex offender registry.
He wasn’t out long. A few months later, records show, Gibson was arrested in Tyrone Boro, Pennsylvania, on a host of sexual assault charges, including attacking a victim under the age of 16. He was sent to prison for four years and six months.
Gibson was released from Pennsylvania’s state prison system in June 2012, and also placed on a sex offender registry there. Three months later, he was back behind bars again, this time in Cobb County, Georgia, for failing to register as a sex offender. He skipped bond and disappeared
He landed in Miami Beach, where in February 2013 he was arrested for trespassing and failing to register as a sex offender. Gibson wound up doing 90 days in jail before he was shipped back to Georgia to serve 6 months behind bars.
Gibson was placed on probation, but promptly rearrested for failing again to register as a sex offender in Cobb County. He did two more years of prison.
He moved to South Florida in 2015, getting an ID card with an address in Homestead. He later moved with a girlfriend to a motel in Rivieria Beach, again not updating his address on his sex-offender registry, according to federal court documents.
His problems continued in Florida, where he got committed to a psychiatric facility in West Palm Beach after a suicide attempt, then got arrested at the Dunkin’ Donuts where he worked in Jupiter.
Gibson went to federal prison, again for failing to register as a sex offender. He was released from federal custody in November 2018, and returned to Miami Beach.
Sources said he had been acting as a caretaker of sorts for Stocker in South Beach.