The man accused of killing controversial former Bury St Edmunds performing arts teacher Scott Rogers in the US has died.
Mathew Hodgkinson, 36, is said by police to have shot and killed his father-in-law, formerly known as Richard Scott-Rogers, at the home they shared, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, before turning the gun on himself two weeks ago.
He survived and was rushed to hospital where he remained in a critical condition until last Friday when he was taken off life support at the request of his wife Kimmie, who is also Rogers’ daughter. He died at 12.45pm.
This week, Brett Stassi, Sheriff of Iberville Parish, told the Bury Free Press that Rogers ‘had taken the coward’s way out’ after a series of shocking revelations emerged about his past in the wake of his death.
He was the founder and principal of the former Academy of Dancing and Performing Arts, in Fornham Road, Bury, which in 1995 was likened to a ‘religious cult’ by Suffolk County Council bosses. Parents later accused Rogers of attempting to brainwash pupils and turn them against their families.
Following a two-year investigation into the academy, the Bury Free Press revealed how Rogers took one pupil – later revealed as Mr Hodgkinson – away from his parents by constant pressure.
Mr Hodgkinson later followed him to Baton Rouge where they worked on the Around Town TV show.
In 1993, Rogers was acquitted at a trial in London of committing a serious sexual offence on a 13-year-old boy.
Since his death, Suffolk Police have received a ‘handful of calls’ from people alleging they were sexually abused by him.
US authorities have confirmed Mr Hodgkinson had been in a sexual relationship with Rogers.
Mr Stassi said Mr Hodgkinson may have married Kimmie so he could stay in the US. He said the pair had a marriage licence from Las Vegas.
Authorities are now waiting on forensic results on the gun and ballistics involved in the shooting. The Sheriff added that they had dealt with cases before with ‘different twists and turns but probably none with as many as this one’.
On the day he was shot, a case against Rogers over allegations of fraud was being heard by a grand jury. An adopted child and a foster child had also recently been taken away from him by authorities.
The grand jury was investigating claims he had not used his real name or disclosed information about his past over adoption and foster parenting paperwork.