COLD CASE ARREST: Michael Hand captured

Sheriff's Office

Sheriff's Office Credit Christopher Evans

A North Carolina man has been arrested in the cold case murder more than 31 years ago of a MA teen, authorities said Sunday.

Tracy Gilpin's family reported her missing on October 1, 1986. Her body was found almost a month later in nearby Plymouth at the edge of the woods in Myles Standish State Forest. During the interviews, statements from Hand led authorities to arrest him, according to officials.

Hand is charged with killing 15-year-old Tracy Gilpin, the sister of the head of the Massachusetts State Police. Hand will appear in a North Carolina court tomorrow, according to the State Police.

Tracy's sister is the superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police, Colonel Kerry Gilpin. For the past three decades, we have remained hopeful that Tracy's murderer would be identified.

The DA's office is seeking to have Hand returned to MA, where he will be arraigned at the Plymouth District Court and charged with murder, the release states.

Authorities have started proceedings to have Hand brought to MA for prosecution in relation to Gilpin's death, the release states.

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"A nearby neighbor heard what they thought was a scream and a auto taking off. Tracy never came home that night", Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz told Fox 25.

Tracy's story received a renewed attention in 2017 when her family offered a $25,000 reward for any new information that could help police track down the teen's killer.

Gilpin said the arrest "leaves us cautiously optimistic that justice for Tracy is within reach". "I know it's solvable", Kerry Gilpin told the Globe previous year. My thoughts today are not just with my own family, but also with all the families who have lost loved ones to violence.

'We will continue to work tirelessly to find justice for all murder victims'. "In my heart of hearts, I know that that person is out there". Cruz said State Police assigned to his office, along with Plymouth and Kingston Police, have never stopped investigating the teenager's slaying.

After the arrest, Kerry Gilpin released a statement, which read, "We are also extremely grateful to the members of the public who have provided information to investigators".

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