A federal judge this week ordered the release of an ailing man suspected in the 2002 disappearance of a Greenwood woman.
Joseph L. Nowicki (pictured, left), who is a suspect but is not charged in the disappearance of Brookley Louks, is dying of cancer and will be allowed to leave a federal medical detention center in Missouri, where he was being held on firearms charges, according to an order issued Monday in U.S. District Court in Indianapolis.
The order by Judge Sarah Evans Barker allows Nowicki to return to his Greenwood-area home to die, the local U.S. attorney's office said Tuesday.
Louks was 19 when she was reported missing June 24, 2002, and has not been seen since. Authorities believe she is dead.
Police in September said drops of what they believed to be Louks' blood were found on Nowicki's property. The blood was found during a search July 17, 2002, police said.
Louks (pictured, right) used to do errands for Nowicki, who was a friend of her father. Police found her car in a restaurant parking lot in Waverly a few days after she was reported missing.
Nowicki denies involvement in the disappearance.
Monday's order says Nowicki's family must pay all expenses for his return to his Indiana residence, and Nowicki cannot leave the home except to receive medical treatment or consult with his lawyer in preparation for his July 28 trial on the firearms charges.
Barker's order came after Nowicki's attorney filed a motion for Nowicki to be released on grounds that he has terminal cancer. A similar motion was denied Feb. 27.
Monday's order noted that an apparent difference between now and Feb. 27 is "Mr. Nowicki's now near-death condition, as attested to by medical staff at the prison facility."
Nowicki's chemotherapy treatments have been halted and medication is being given only to relieve pain and discomfort, Barker noted.
RTV6 reported last week that Nowicki recently hinted in a letter to authorities that he has information that could help the probe.
RTV6 reported Nowicki wrote the following: "If I were to tell you all I know right now, then your case would be cleared up." RTV6 learned of the letter through a source on condition that the source not be identified.
- June 25, 2003: Suspect Hints He Could Provide Info About Missing Woman
- May 29, 2003: Missing Woman's Grandfather Denied Access To Case Info
- April 23, 2003: Missing Woman's Grandfather Goes To Court For Case Info
- January 12, 2003: Coroner: Intoxication Killed Father Of Missing Woman
- November 5, 2002: Father Of Missing Greenwood Woman Found Dead
- September 17, 2002: Search Continues For Missing Greenwood Teen
- August 22, 2002: Prosecutor: Missing Teen's Father Must Answer Questions
- July 30, 2002: Drugs May Be Connected To Greenwood Woman's Disappearance, Records Show
- July 29, 2002: Suspect In Teen's Disappearance Pleads Not Guilty To Unrelated Charge
- July 26, 2002: Suspect In Teen's Disappearance Arrested On Unrelated Charges
- July 18, 2002: Police To Reinterview Man About Missing Greenwood Teen
- July 18, 2002: Police Search Home In Case Of Missing Greenwood Teen
- July 1, 2002: Police Baffled By Disappearance Of Greenwood Woman
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