Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Sometime on Wednesday, August 27 2014, Scott Rogers, 52, was shot and killed in his Iberville, Baton Rouge LA home. The host of the local television program "Around Town" was known for his promotion of civic agencies and charities but it has been discovered that many may not have really known him at all.
Police believe that Rogers was shot and killed by his son-in-law Matthew Hodgkinson, 36, who then turned the gun upon himself. Hodgkinson failed to kill himself in what police are describing as a murder-attempted suicide and he is in a medically induced coma at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital.
Rogers was originally from Suffolk England and founded the Academy of Dancing and Performing Arts in Bury St Edmonds, Suffolk in 1983. He was known as Richard Scott-Rogers and by the early 1990's, he was facing 13 charges. The Inner London Crown Court cleared him of the charges in 1993 and the nature of the charges was not disclosed.
There was sufficient concern though for the Suffolk County Council to release a very carefully worded statement on November 9 1995. The council very openly hinted about the behavior of a "senior member of the academy" and a trend for children who attended to bond with that person and reject their parents. Some people reported that it was very similar to a cult in it's workings.
More than 500 pupils attended the academy which was held at various schools as well as other locations. Rogers refuted the charges and challenged the council to conduct a full investigation of the allegations. He did admit that he had children stay at his home but he added that they had their parent's permission to do so. It would seem that was a risky challenge since some of the charges were rumored to involve the possible sexual abuse of children. It has been reported that Rogers was acquitted of a charge of molesting a 13 year old boy during that time period.
For some reason............ Rogers packed his things and moved to the US with his biological daughter Kimberly Ann Scott-Rogers. They moved to Texas first and then ended up in Baton Rouge LA around 1999, where they eventually became naturalized citizens. At some point, Matthew Hodgkinson moved from England and married Rogers's daughter Kimmie and became the producer for Rogers's program.
Now you probably have to get out your pencil and scorecard to keep track of the characters. Hodgkinson and Rogers knew each other in England because Hodgkinson had been a student at the performing arts school. He may have also known Kimmie before he came to the US. It has been reported that his marriage to Kimmie was a sham marriage so that he could stay in the United States. Hodgkinson was reportedly, Rogers lover for quite some time which certainly would lead someone to wonder....... what kind of home was it on Daisy Ave. Rogers, Kimmie, Hodgkinson and two children all lived in the house in Iberville. Rogers had an adopted 10 year old boy and was in the process of finalizing the adoption of a two year old boy.
The web of lies that Rogers had constructing and was living started to tear apart a few weeks before his death. A grand jury was investigating Rogers and his daughter had testified before it recently while Hodgkinson was reportedly supposed to testify soon. Rogers was being investigated for possible fraud because he had left England with a different name than the one he had used in the adoptions. There was also a question as to whether he had any outstanding charges against him when he had left the UK.
About two weeks before, federal authorities and child services removed the two children from Rogers's home but there has been no explanation given at this time for it. What has come to light is the public statements of two other men, one who also was living at the Rogers home. Both men stated that Rogers had abused them when they were in England and they had moved to the US to be with him.
The police had been called to the Rogers home about a week before the shooting when Hodgkinson believed that Rogers may have taken too many sleeping pills. Rogers stated to police that he had only taken a couple of extra pills so that he could sleep but police added that there was a lot of stress in the home for the past few weeks.
Hodgkinson called the television station which aired Rogers program and left a message on Aug 26 that the program had been canceled because of a family catastrophe. He then shot Rogers while he was sleeping in bed before turning the gun on himself. Police found a note that they believe Hodgkinson had written alongside Rogers bed that stated that they had broken up the family but they didn't get Rogers.
The police have stated that if Hodgkinson survives the suicide attempt, he will be charged with Rogers murder. Rogers daughter has made no public statement and child services has made no statement about the children that had been removed. It would seem that there was much more to Rogers that the public or even his co-workers knew and I am sure that we will hear what other secrets and lies he had been hiding for all these years.
Update Sept 2 2014:
It has been reported that not only were Kimmie and Matthew possibly involved in a sham marriage to prevent his deportation but no marriage license has been uncovered yet for the two. One of the men who was involved with Rogers and reportedly lived at the home with Matthew, and Rogers has stated that Kimmie had not even been living in the home. Matthew, pictured above, was also known as Matthew Hodgkins and Kimmie, pictured in the polka dot dress, both worked for the "About Town" program that Rogers had created and self produced for years.
Two men have come forward and spoke anonymously on the radio program the "Jim Engster Radio Show" and both accused Rogers of molesting them when they were young. One of the callers stated that he had met Rogers when he attended the dance studio in England and that Rogers had begun molesting him when he was 13 years old. He added that it continued until he was 18 and they continued their relationship after Rogers had arranged for him to come to the US. That caller stated that he had been working on the set of Rogers's show as well as living with him in the same house as the shooting.
The caller went on to state that he had feared for his own life in the past week and was in protective custody awaiting his appearance before the grand jury. That man stated that he knew Hodgkinson and he felt sorry for him. He believed that the sexual part of their relationship had ended years ago but Matthew was subjected to 23 years of emotional abuse, sexual abuse and manipulation. This does coincide with the allegations made against Rogers in England. Officials there had reported that he frequently held sleep-overs where he cuddled the children in their sleeping bags as well as being very manipulative.... almost cult-like in his influence of the children.
The second caller stated that he had been a foster child of Rogers when he was 11 years old and he described Rogers as a monster and master manipulator. The man went on to explain that he did not know how to escape the sexual abuse and learned very early that if he tried to reject the advances, the abuse would become more violent. He added that he had had no contact with Rogers for about 16 years.
Rogers evidently was living a double life while in Louisiana. The people there knew him as a mild mannered, accented man who created his own quaint television show. He featured charities and non profits and gave them the opportunity to showcase their upcoming events. He was also very involved with the Unity Church of Christianity until he broke off to create his own church. That church, the 13:34 Church of Christianity was closer to his studio and was based on the bible passage that commands the disciples to love one another. That church has declined to make any comments about Rogers as of yet.
It almost seems as though Rogers had been a completely different person once he came to the US but under the cloak of public service and acceptance..... he seems to have kept carrying on the manipulation of people.
Update Sept 6 2014:
Matthew Hodgkinson died yesterday while on life support at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital following the murder- attempted suicide on Aug 27. The police have not released any other information in regards to the grand jury investigation into Scott Rogers or what will become of the two young boys that had been with Rogers.