The latest news about the Crystal Rogers mur*der case is that prosecutors are looking into a possible link between the deaths of the Kentucky mother of five who went missing and her father, who was shot and killed a year after she went missing.
People said that Rogers, 35, went missing on July 3, 2015, after her boyfriend Brooks Houck last saw her at his family farm. A police report from the time said that Houck and the other woman were in bed together but she wasn’t there when he woke up. Rogers had four other children. He is thought to be de*ad.
Houck was arrested last month on “charges stemming from the Crystal Rogers investigation,” the FBI Louisville office wrote in a Sept. 27 post on X (formerly Twitter). The woman’s body has not been found yet.
Local stations WHAS-TV, WLKY, and WKYT got court documents that say Houck, 41, is charged with mur*der and tampering with physical evidence. He is said to be in the Nelson County Jail on a $10 million cash bond. Houck has now said he is not guilty.
Now, eight years after Rogers went missing, prosecutors think Houck may have something to do with the de*ath of her father, Tommy Ballard, in 2016. His de*ath is still unsolved.
According to the Louisville Courier Journal, WKRC-TV, and WLKY, Hardin County Prosecutor Shane Young said at Houck’s arraignment last week that his team found a gun that may have been the same one used to kill Ballard. The gun was reportedly sold by Houck’s brother Nick. Reports say that those test results are still not in, and a motion to lower Houck’s bond was turned down.
The Kentucky Standard reported that Nick was fired from the local police department after being accused of getting in the way of the investigation.
Ballard was killed by a single bullet that hit him in the chest on November 19, 2016, in Bardstown, Kentucky. He was getting ready for a hunting trip with his son and 12-year-old grandson.
His wife, Sherry Ballard, told PEOPLE in 2020 that Ballard had never given up looking for his daughter. No one has been caught in connection with his de*ath.
According to the Kentucky Standard, Houck was considered a major suspect in Rogers’ disappearance at the beginning of the investigation, but charges against him weren’t brought until recently.
Court documents cited by WDRB, WLKY, and WYKT show that weeks prior to Houck’s arrest, authorities charged 32-year-old Joseph Lawson with tampering with physical evidence and conspiring to commit mu*rder. According to the outlets, Lawson pled not guilty to the charges and was given a $500,000 bond.
How Houck and Lawson are purportedly related is unknown.
The family of Rogers issued a statement after Houck’s arrest to express gratitude to the federal and local authorities for their work on the case.
According to WLKY, the statement said, in part, “At this time we ask for privacy as this is another step forward for justice for Crystal.” “Keep praying that we bring Crystal home and that justice is done.”