Family, friends ride in memory of slain officer after arrest in cold case

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JONESVILLE, N.C. -- Flashing lights along Interstate 77 in Yadkin County were an emotional reminder of what happened 16 years ago near the Highway 67 exit.

As they do each year, dozens of law enforcement officers, friends and family members of Jonesville police Sgt. Gregory Martin remembered the morning in 1996 that he was shot and killed.

But this year was different.

On Wednesday, a Florida man was arrested and charged in Martin's murder. Scott Sica, 36, was being extradited to North Carolina as Martin's loved ones embarked on their memorial ride Friday morning.

"Right now I'm kind of on the rebound," said Martin's daughter, Brittany.  "I don't know whether to have closure or kind of still be skeptic. I think I'll have more closure once he's back in North Carolina and they can try him. Once that happens, I think I'll have more closure."

"When you get that phone call saying (to) be over at the Yadkin courthouse, and you get over there and then here comes the chief of police (with) a little smile on his face -- you know it's going to be good news," added Brittany's 16-year-old brother, Crue. "He says, 'We know who the guy is.'"

State Trooper Vann Tate was the last person to hear Martin's voice on a radio call for backup, but by the time he got there it was too late.

"I say, 'Greg, man it's your day son and I know I'll see you again. And that's God's promise,'" Tate said as he pointed to the sky.

Tate shared his story after the memorial ride, noting the counseling services he underwent to help cope with his friend's death. At the time, Tate said the two shared stories about their infant sons who were born three months apart.