BARDSTOWN, KY (WAVE) - The first 48 hours are the most critical in any police investigation. Saturday, will be two weeks and there is still no arrest in the murder of a Bardstown Police Officer Jason Ellis. Tips continue to come in, the reward fund continues to grow, and the community's support remains strong.
It's the 3rd year for the Bourbon City BBQ festival. People from all over the country are in town this weekend for the festival. Many of them heartbroken over Officer Ellis' murder because he worked security at the event two years ago.
"This is small community we are a close knit family here," said festival organizer Rick Berry. "It affects everybody here."
When anyone is in pain, everyone here feels it. Berry knew they had they had to do something to help Officer Ellis' family.
Ellis was found gunned down May 25, ambushed while clearing debris from a ramp on the Bluegrass Parkway in Nelson County.
"There is no way we could replace what he's given he's given his life for us," said Berry. "No way we can replace that."
Berry said the cooks have collected money to donate to the Ellis family. At the festival, they'll also be selling shirts, decals, and wristbands to raise money.
Raising money is also something Heather Martin is doing on her own.
"I wanted to help but I don't know how because I'm just 18," said Martin.
Martin ordered bracelets online and is selling them around town.
"They are $3 each," said Ellis. "We've already sold about 1,200 and made $2,500 just turned into the police department. There is 2,200 coming in next week."
Bardstown Police Chief Rick McCubbin is moved by the community's support. He's even taken to social media being candid and vocal about finding out who killed one of his own.
This latest post on the Bardstown police department Facebook page has gotten some attention.
It shows a beach like destination and reads: "Need a vacation? Want a fresh start? All it takes is a 30 second conversation...reward $125,00."
"I've never been politically correct," said McCubnin. "I tell people what they need to hear not what they want to hear. I speak the truth from the heart."
It's that honesty and compassion that so many in this community have.
"I think Chief McCubbin is doing the right thing," said Bardstown resident Betty Hart. "I think he is going to make sure once that person is found that everything is done by the book and precisely so that there are no loop holes and the person will not have a chance to not go to jail."
Chief McCubbin said they have gotten so many leads but none of course have lead to an arrest. Despite the fact the clock is ticking he says he wants to make sure they do everything the right way.
He added that he met with officer Ellis' wife Friday. He said she very overwhelmed but amazed by the community's support