Search continues for murder suspect over holiday weekend

Nicholas Rucker

WHITLEY COUNTY — A heavy law enforcement presence was noted in Whitley County on Sunday and Monday as the search continued for a suspect in the fatal shooting of a Corbin woman last week.

Kentucky State Police identified a suspect, Nicholas M. Rucker, 38, of Corbin on Friday for the fatal shooting that occurred in Woodbine on Wednesday and as of press time Monday, Rucker was still being sought.

Rucker has a warrant for his arrest for a charge of murder. Rucker was the boyfriend of the victim, Vicki S. Conner, 57, of Corbin.

On Friday KSP Post 11 was requesting anyone with additional information concerning the investigation or the whereabouts of Rucker was asked to contact KSP at 606-878-6622 or 1-800-222-5555.

However on Monday, according to scanner traffic, the search had led to the Cripple Creek area and people living in the area had reported seeing a man that was believed to be Rucker walking barefoot with no shirt.

Whitley County Sheriff's Department made a post on its Facebook page at 4:23 p.m. Sunday that said, "Numerous law enforcement agencies are in the area of Prewitt Bend searching for Nicholas Rucker. Please use caution in this area as K-9 units and air units are searching for this person. He was first seen in Croley Bend and has moved into the Prewitt Bend area..."

On Monday morning the Whitley County Sheriff's Office posted the following on its Facebook page: "Monday, May 27, at approximately 2:30, Sheriff Todd Shelley recognized Nicholas Rucker while answering a complaint in the area of HWY 511 in Woodbine- Henry Barton Road. Sheriff Shelley pursued Nicholas Rucker on foot while multiple agencies joined the pursuit. Troopers from KSP, agents from the Forestry Department, Corbin Police, the Laurel County Sheriff's Office and deputies from Whitley County Sheriff's Department searched for hours into the night along with 2 air units. At the time, he is still on the run. If you see Nicholas Rucker, call 911 immediately. DO NOT wait to call as this slows response time significantly. He is armed and dangerous and we will continue to pursue this person. Please be alert to your surroundings and do not approach Nicholas Rucker. We will post any updates as they are made available. We are working continuously to locate and capture Nicholas Rucker."

At approximately 7:30 p.m. Wednesday KSP Post 11, London received a call from the Whitley County 911 about a shooting that had taken place at a residence on KY 1064 in the Woodbine community of Whitley County.

Conner was pronounced deceased at 814 KY 1064 by the Whitley County Coroner's Office Wednesday night. The circumstances surrounding the shooting were still unclear as of press time Monday night and the investigation was continuing.

Conner’s body was to been taken to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Frankfort for an autopsy that was been scheduled for Thursday. No update from the results of that autopsy was available as of press time Monday.

KSP Detective Dackery Larkey is continuing the investigation. He was assisted at the scene by troopers from Post 11, Whitley County Sheriff’s Office, Corbin Police Department, Williamsburg Police Department and Whitley County Coroner’s Office.