Nova Scotia

Steven Skinner arrested in Venezuela 5 years after Stacey Adams slaying

Venezuelan police have arrested a Nova Scotian man wanted in the 2011 slaying of a 20-year-old Halifax-area man.

Cole Harbour, N.S., man faces second-degree murder charges for 2011 killing

Halifax police released this photo of Skinner in 2011.

Venezuelan police have arrested a Nova Scotian man who left Canada shortly before being charged with murder in 2011. 

Steven Skinner, 43, faces a second-degree murder charge over the killing of 20-year-old Stacey Adams in the Halifax area. 

Skinner, of Cole Harbour, was arrested Sunday on a beach in Margarita Island, in the Caribbean off the country's northeastern coast. Halifax District RCMP said they are talking to local authorities to start the extradition process.

Douglas Rico, director of Venezuela's Cuerpo de Investigaciones Cientificas, tweeted that Skinner was carrying a Venezuelan identity card with a different name on it.

Adams, 20, was found shot dead in front of a new home in a Lake Echo neighbourhood in April 2011. The house was one of five on a dirt street and was rented at the time.

It's believed Skinner was at a home in Lake Echo when Adams and a friend arrived. Shots were fired and Adams was killed. Police think Skinner left Canada shortly after Adams died. 

The Facebook page Justice for Stacey Adams, created by friends and family in 2011 to follow his case, quoted his mother Gloria Adams as saying yesterday that, "I made a promise to my son Stacey and today that promise has been fulfilled." 

A warm man 'excited to become a father'

Kendelle Blois, a family member, runs the page.

"I'm feeling relief, I'm feeling overwhelmed and I'm feeling happy that my mom, Gloria, gets to fulfil her promise to Stacey," Blois told CBC News on Tuesday. 

"She promised that she would never give up in seeking justice for him. And we are one step closer to that today than we were yesterday."

Blois said the family wasn't focusing on the fact that the man accused of killing Adams was found on a beach in South America.

'He could have been anywhere'

"I'm not surprised that that's where he was. He could have been anywhere in the world. It never really mattered where he was found," she said. 

She described Stacey Adams as a strong and giving man with an infectious smile. He was also about to become a father, but was killed before the child was born.

"He was excited to become a father, he was excited to start a family. He had respect for his family and friends, you know — that's what type of man he had grown to be," Blois said. 

Stacey Adams was about to become a father for the first time when he was killed. (Facebook)

Last month, Gloria Adams spoke to CBC News after Joseph Cameron, another young black Nova Scotian, was shot and killed. Stacey Adams and Cameron grew up together. Neither man had a criminal record. 

"It keeps happening and there is an assumption that they must be mixed up in gangs or drugs," Gloria Adams said in April. "It's a rough neighbourhood, sure, but these two young men weren't mixed up in any of that."

Cameron was reportedly wearing a T-shirt bearing an image of Adams when Cameron was killed. 

Skinner accused of burning 66-year-old with hot knives

Skinner also faces criminal charges over an incident in 2009. He is accused of going with a Toronto man to the home of a 66-year-old man in Lower Sackville.

Skinner and his friend allegedly had an issue with the Lower Sackville man's son. 

Hot spoons and knives were used to burn parts of the older man's body. 

Skinner was released from jail in 2009 on $50,000 bail in that case, ahead of his 2012 trial. He ran away before that trial started. 

In 2006, two clothing stores owned by Skinner were firebombed within an hour of each other. One of the men charged with arson in the fires was Cory Melvin, the younger brother of Halifax crime figure Jimmy Melvin Jr. 

With files from Elizabeth Chiu