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The suspect in the killing of Emily Rogers, a 23-year-old Milwaukee woman who went missing for more than a week before she was found dead on May 5, had a history of domestic violence offenses, according to court records and local reports.
Milwaukee authorities on Wednesday arrested and charged Nicholas Matzen, 35, with first-degree reckless homicide and hiding a corpse. He is being held on $500,000 cash bond.
Matzen was the father of Rogers’ 1-year-old child, as FOX 6 first reported.
“This case has allegations that the defendant strangled his child’s mother to death and cold-heartedly hid her body,” Amy Spanczak, Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney, said during a Thursday court proceeding, according to FOX 6.
Prosecutors allege that Rogers was breaking up with Matzen when he allegedly strangled her to death, the outlet reported.
The 35-year-old’s arrest record includes charges of possession of THC, felony possession of a firearm, recklessly endangering safety and use of a dangerous weapon from 2010, as well as arson and disorderly conduct charges related to a domestic incident from 2020, and a hit-and-run from less than a month prior to Rogers’ disappearance, county records show.
The 2020 arson case, which involved Rogers, according to FOX 6, was dismissed with prejudice after Matzen’s attorney argued that the state had delayed trial proceedings for too long.
Prosecutors alleged that Matzen’s mother called Rogers at the time and asked her to check in on Matzen, who had apparently been asleep, at his residence. When Rodgers arrived, Matzen became agitated and attempted to choke her before she left the residence.
She told prosecutors later that he sent her angry text messages, including one that displayed photos of Matzen burning Rogers’ belongings in a garage, FOX 6 reported.
Matzen served time for his 2010 arrest following an incident in which he shot and injured a man before meeting up with a friend in a parking lot in an effort to get rid of his weapon.
Earlier this month, one of Matzen’s friends would also lead police to a wooded area where authorities found Rodgers’ body, according to FOX 6.
Representatives from the Wisconsin District Attorney’s office did not respond to inquiries from Fox News Digital.
Matzen will appear in court on May 19 for a preliminary hearing.
Fox News’ Adam Sabes contributed to this report.