KSP: Nelson Co. mother, daughter murdered in home

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky State Police say a mother and daughter found dead in their Nelson County home Tuesday were murdered.

Kathy Netherland, 48, and her 16-year-old daughter were found dead inside their home in the Botland community of Bardstown on Tuesday.

The cause of death has not been released.

"Why is it Kathy and Samantha, because they never hurt no one--never bothered no one," said Kathy's aunt Barbara Donahue. "They lived a very private life."

Donahue says her niece was dedicated to her faith and was active in her church. 

She said the mother and daughter were found by Kathy's father Tuesday morning, after Kathy didn't show up for work. She believes the murders are random, and that the suspect didn't know either of the victims.

"I'm sure they didn't have enemies," said Donahue. "They were too good of people. How can you have enemies when you live in this church?"As a special education teacher at Bardstown Elementary for the past seven years, Netherland leaves behind not only family but plenty of students.

"She had a real heart for those children and those children had a real heart for her," said Bardstown City Schools Superintendent Brent Holsclaw.

Holsclaw says with the death of not only a teacher but a student, the district has been dealt a heavy blow. Kathy's daughter, whom family identifies as Samantha, was a Sophomore at Bardstown High School.

The district has brought in grief counselors from two outside organizations to supplement the support given by permanent school counselors. Kentucky Community Crisis Response Team and Communicare are both contracted by the district to help students and staff.

"You always try and prepare for these type of things," said Holsclaw. "You try and put these things together, think about what could happen and prepare for the worst, but you never can prepare for this," he said.

Holsclaw says they started reaching out to staff and students shortly after the bodies were found Tuesday morning.

"We're going to have them here as long as we need them here," said Holsclaw. "As we begin to return to some normalcy they'll probably be here less, but they'll be on-call until the need goes away."

Donahue says she last saw Kathy and Samantha on Easter, only a few days before the murders. Samantha, she says, was preparing for prom when her life was cut short.

"She was going to go to the prom this weekend. Had her dress, shoes, earrings, everything laid out to go, and now this has all come to an end."

And with so many unknowns in this death investigation, family is asking the people of Nelson County for help.

"Please help us find who did it," Donahue pleaded. "We don't know nothing. We need to know who did this so we can stop it."

Family says Kathy was an active member of Parkway Baptist Church. The lead pastor at the church, Dr. James Carroll, told WDRB in a written statement that Kathy will be sorely missed:

"Obviously, we are heartbroken by this tragedy and we are concentrating on ministering to this family and many in our church family who are close to them. Kathy was a woman of sincere faith in Jesus Christ and selfless love for others. She worked tirelessly with children in our community in obedience to Jesus' command to serve the least of these."

Investigators searched the home on U.S. 150, also known as Springfield Road, around 4 p.m. Tuesday to collect evidence.

Kentucky State Police are now looking for anyone with surveillance video in the Botland community to help search for suspects.

If you have any information, you are asked to contact KSP Post 4 at 270-766-5078.

As far as funeral arrangements, family tells WDRB that a viewing will be held Sunday from 3 p.m. until 8 p.m. The funeral will be held Monday from 8:30 until 11 a.m. Both events will be held at Parkway Baptist Church on Springfield Road in Bardstown, Ky.

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