Kelly Nolan’s killer still unknown 15 years after disappearance, family offers $25,000 reward

MADISON, Wis. — It’s been 15 years since UW-Whitewater student Kelly Nolan disappeared after a night out on State Street in Madison, and police are still searching for her killer.

Now her family is offering a $25,000 reward for any information provided over the next year that could lead to the conviction of her killer.

Nolan was last seen in the early morning hours of June 23, 2007. After an extensive search, her body was found 16 days later in the woods 10 miles away, off County Road MM in the Town of Dunn. Police said Nolan had no known connection to the area where she was found.

In 2014, officials updated her death certificate to list her cause of death as blunt force trauma to the torso with fractures after previously only saying her death was a homicide. Her killer has never been caught.

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Nolan was living in downtown Madison during the summer of 2007, and police believe she was separated from friends — either voluntarily or by force — at around 2:30 a.m.

In an update on the case Thursday, Madison police said multiple detectives are still assigned to the case and continue to pursue all new leads. Currently, they have not identified anyone as a possible person of interest or suspect in the case. Police say no piece of information is considered too small or insignificant.

Anyone with information about her disappearance or who may have been responsible should call the Madison Area Crime Stoppers at (608) 266-6014.

Nolan’s family also released a statement Thursday, which was shared by Madison police, which appears in full below:

Fifteen years have passed since our beautiful daughter and sister, Kelly Nolan, was tragically taken from us.

This day in our lives seems so close and yet so distant. Her legacy of kindness, humor, loyalty and intelligence are remembered daily by all those who loved her. Kelly simply had a beautiful soul, and we thank the Lord for sending her to us, even if for a shortened time.

The passage of time in no way diminishes the heinousness of the crime. We are still seeking accountability and answers surrounding our daughter’s death. We know there is someone out there, whether locally or elsewhere, that can shed light on what happened to Kelly during her final moments of life. Moments we were robbed of spending with her.

We ask that you contact the Madison, Wisconsin, Police Department with any information you might have. No detail is too small or insignificant. Please tell police what you saw, know, heard or believe happened to Kelly. Those details just might be the information that is needed to solve this crime and bring a small bit of peace to our family.

We ask that you be brave. And know coming forward will not be easy. There are ways for you to remain anonymous if you choose. We also want to take a moment to thank the Madison Police Department, who remain dedicated to solving this case and work daily to prevent other innocent young women from becoming victims.

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you.

The family of Kelly Nolan