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DIGGING DEEPER: Tucson woman says murder suspect terrorized her family

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TUCSON (KVOA) - We are learning more about a homicide that took place on Miracle Mile over two weeks ago.

Tucson police said 21-year old Nicole Collins was found naked, on the ground with multiple stab wounds. She later died at the hospital.

The suspect, Bruce Fairbanks Spring was later arrested in Globe, Ariz. and is in the Pima County Jail under a $1 million bond.

An eight-page search warrant uncovered by News 4 Tucson Digging Deeper Team goes into detail about what the suspected murderer did after he reportedly stabbed 21-year-old Collins.

Collins was recently buried by her family.

A family friend who asked not to be identified told News 4 Tucson, "She didn't have to die the way she did.  Nobody does, nobody should."

Bruce Fairbanks Spring had been staying at the Terrace Motel on Miracle Mile, it's reported Collins was a neighbor.

Tucson police said the motive was unclear, but what is clear is the trail of blood Spring left behind to his room. 

According to the court documents, "A separate blood trail led away from the scene in the neighborhood."

A witness told police he saw "A male walking in the direction, swinging what appeared to be a sword, and whistling a song."

The document also showed surveillance video of "Spring carrying a bloody short sword and a large sword in a sheath on his back."

He also tried to "Kick in the door of an elderly couple." He then found an empty hot tub where he hid for a few hours he then went to the front door and knocked.

"My husband went to answer, the man put the machete to his throat and made him hit the ground," said the victim, who asked not to be identified.

However, the victim was willing to talk about how Spring terrorized her family.

"I could hear my husband fall the ground and that time my son was coming out and my husband told him get back in your room he's not messing around. Get back in your room."

She was in the bedroom and trying to call police but her phone was dead.

"I snuck out the back door jumped the fence to the neighbors, went around their backside so he didn't see me because I didn't want to make things worse for my family."

She called police.

She also said, "During this commotion, he has my husband down in the living room with a knife to his throat and he has my son down with a knife to his throat. Telling him he's going to take my son."

Spring told them he wanted their truck and also wanted to take the son with him.  Her husband told him no, take me. So, the three went out to where the truck was parked.

"The man got into the truck and told my husband to get in...my husband looked at my son and told him to run.  So, he ran back into the garage and my husband slammed the door while the guy tried to stab him but he stabbed the door instead."

Tucson police arrived within minutes, but Spring had taken off. She said a neighbor and her nephew tried to catch Spring.

"But they say he was doing way 90 miles per hour down Oracle and they could not keep up with him."

She said he left a trail behind. "My jacuzzi was full of blood, my house was full of blood, my porch was full of blood, my yard was full of blood."

She said, through it all she knows her family had an Angel looking out for them. But at the same time, she grieves for Nicole Collins.

"The terror she had to be in, she was a tiny little thing.  It's sickening.  It makes me sick every day to think about this poor child and what he did to her."

The family did get their truck returned to them, but it was extremely damaged, and bloodstained.

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Lupita Murillo

Lupita Murillo is an investigative reporter. She is part of the Digging Deeper team that uncovers important issues focusing on crime that affects the community.

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