Emily Rogers homicide; accused killer's history of domestic violence

The family of Emily Rogers will lay the young mother to rest in Texas on Monday, May 16. Her body was found in St. Francis.

Rogers' ex-boyfriend, Nicholas Matzen, was charged on Wednesday, May 11, with strangling her to death – and it is not the first time he has been accused of a similar crime.

"This case has allegations that the defendant strangled his child’s mother to death and cold-heartedly hid her body," said Amy Spanczak, Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney.

Nicholas Matzen

Matzen shook his head as prosecutors details the charges against him. He is accused of killing 23-year-old Emily Rogers as she was breaking up with him. Prosecutors say Matzen has a lengthy, unreported, or under-reported history of domestic violence.

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"This does include a 2020 case that was dismissed in arson of property with the same victim," Spanczak said.

In that case, prosecutors said Matzen's mom called Rogers to come to a Cudahy home to check on Matzen who was not waking up. Documents say when Rogers got there, he began yelling at her, and tried to choke her – but was unable to. Rogers packed up some things and left. 

Rogers told investigators she later got angry messages from Matzen – and photos of him burning her belongings in a garage. 

Emily Rogers

Matzen was charged with arson, disorderly conduct, along with domestic abuse assessments – and a no contact order was put in place. 

A judge dismissed that case with prejudice last fall – after Matzen's attorney argued the state delayed in bringing it to trial. 

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Matzen served time in the Department of Corrections after he pleaded guilty to shooting and wounding a man in Cudahy in 2010. Filings say he met a friend in a parking lot near Clement and Norwich in Milwaukee to ditch the gun. Nearly twelve years later, another friend led police to a wooded area several hundred feet away – where Rogers' body was found. 

Matzen is being held on $500,000 bond. He is due back in court for a preliminary hearing on May 19.