Nelson Co. Sheriff: Missing Bardstown woman likely dead, boyfrie - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Nelson Co. Sheriff: Missing Bardstown woman likely dead, boyfriend now a suspect

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Crystal Rogers Crystal Rogers

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WDRB) – Nelson County Sheriff Ed Mattingly says a Bardstown mother who has been missing since July 3 is likely dead and her boyfriend, Brooks Houck, is now a suspect in her disappearance.

“I think it’s safe to say she’s dead,” Sheriff Mattingly said of Crystal Rogers in a press conference Friday. "Crystal Rogers was extremely close with her family. She has had no contact with her family. There are certain things people do when they exist on this earth and she has vanished on this earth."

In a press conference regarding the dismissal of Brooks Houck’s brother Nick Houck from the Bardstown Police Department, Mattingly said Brooks Houck is now a suspect.

In fact, Mattingly named Brooks Houck the sole suspect in the case. He also believes Nick Houck knows what happened to her.

"I have 8 pages of circumstances that lead me to look in their direction, yes," Mattingly said.

According to a Final Order signed by Bardstown Mayor John Royalty, Nick Houck was fired from the Bardstown Police Department for interfering with an ongoing investigation into Rogers' disappearance.

Rogers’ family members have said Brooks Houck has not helped them search for her. In the Order, Royalty wrote that Nick Houck "did not cooperate with (the) ongoing criminal investigation. 

Sheriff Mattingly says Nick also called his brother Brooks and told him not to talk to police, shortly after Rogers' disappearance.

"He has done things that caused him to be suspect," Mattingly said. "When evidence comes to a point that probable cause points at him, he'll be arrested."

Bardstown Police Chief Rick McCubbin says Nick Houck's failure to cooperate reflects badly on his department.

"I was less than impressed and was very bothered by some of the actions that were displayed," McCubbin said. "I expect a lot out of the officers who are under me and that was not a behavior that I was going to accept as chief."

Crystal Rogers' family has spent the last four months searching for her. The mother of five was last seen the weekend of July 4 at Brooks Houck's farm.

Her car was later found abandoned, her purse and keys still inside.

"I don't think you're going to get closure until Crystal is found and of course whoever is responsible for her disappearance is brought to justice," Rogers' father Mike Ballard said. "When it's all said and done, it's the truth that matters and that's what we're here to arrive at."

Nick Houck's attorney has not returned calls. Sheriff Mattingly seems confident they will eventually gather enough evidence to arrest Brooks Houck.

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