Arrest made in Colorado cold case

Matthew Rodgers murder suspect.
Matthew Rodgers murder suspect.(FCSO)
Published: Sep. 10, 2020 at 5:28 PM MDT
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FREMONT COUNTY, Colo. (KKTV) - The Fremont County Sheriff’s Office believes they found the man responsible for killing 76-year-old Kenneth Orchard in 2018.

The sheriff’s office announced a major update in the cold case on Thursday when they shared the arrest details for 46-year-old Matthew Rodgers. Rodgers is facing the following charges:

• 1st-Degree Homicide, Class 1 Felony

• 1st-Degree Arson, Class 3 Felony

• 1st-Degree Burglary, Class 3 Felony

• Crimes against an at-risk adult, Class 4 Felony

• Tampering with a deceased human body, Class 3 Felony

• Tampering with physical evidence, Class 6 Felony

As of Thursday, Rodgers was being held at the Fremont County Detention Center without bond. Other than a DNA match in the case that the sheriff’s office said tied Rodgers to the crime, other details on how investigators tied Rodgers to the murder were not immediately shared with the public.

Orchard was found dead in a home soon after crews were called to house for a fire.

A former Fremont County sheriff’s deputy was sentenced to two years behind bars for stealing from the crime scene in this case. Then-Deputy Christopher Pape found himself on the other side of the law after pocketing nearly $6,000 in coins and other items while investigating the beating death of Orchard in Canon City.

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