BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WDRB) -- The ambush killing of a Bardstown Police officer is still unsolved five years later. It's the mystery on exit 34 that still haunts law enforcement in Nelson County.

“When it is a fallen officer, it hits home," Kentucky State Police Trooper Scotty Sharp said. "It's personal."

Exit 34 is where Bardstown Police Officer Jason Ellis was found shot multiple times off the Bluegrass Parkway in 2013. Sharp was there that early May morning securing the scene.

“Even if you do not know the officer personally, you have a brotherhood, a connection,” he said.

Five years later, KSP is still investigating the police ambush. As for how difficult this case is to solve, Sharp said it’s a difficult one.

“It’s hard to describe how hard it is,” Sharp said.

Around 2 a.m. Ellis was on his way home from work when he pulled over to remove debris from the road. He was attacked in the dark of the night.

“We've always looked in prior arrests, cases that he worked," Sharp said. "That was obviously a big factor in part of the investigation."

Yet still, nothing has come from it.

“The ones where we don't immediately have a suspect, the longer it goes, the harder it is," Sharp said. "But they're extremely hard cases to work, especially if you're going on limited evidence and that kind of thing."

While police cannot say what that limited evidence includes, it does not contain any type of video.

“Something to kind of go off of ... [the video] would have been much better than the evidence that we've got right now,” Sharp said.

As the chaos of that day on exit 34 has now calmed, and a makeshift memorial has taken the place of flashing blue lights, KSP said the murder of Ellis is far from being cold.

“I’ve stressed over and over that it's not a cold case," Sharp said. "As long as we continue to get tips in, still it's a vibrant investigation. And we will follow on every tip that we get."

KSP is the lead agency on the case, but it's assisted by the FBI, the Nelson County Sheriff's Office and Bardstown Police. Sharp said law enforcement never thought the case would be unsolved five years later,  but it's not slowing them down from finding Ellis' killer.

“I don't know where they're at, but they're out there absolutely, and we're going to find them,” Sharp said.

The reward now being offered in this case is $218,000. Tips can be made to elliscaseEtips@ky.gov or on the KSP mobile app.

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