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Crystal Rogers' parents hope third farm search leads to daughter's discovery

Published: Aug. 30, 2016 at 3:24 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 31, 2016 at 3:32 AM EDT
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A large contingent of law enforcement vehicles were at the scene. (Source: Air 3/WAVE 3 News)
A large contingent of law enforcement vehicles were at the scene. (Source: Air 3/WAVE 3 News)
Several pop-up tents are on the property. (Source: Air 3/WAVE 3 News)
Several pop-up tents are on the property. (Source: Air 3/WAVE 3 News)
Crystal Rogers (Source: Family photo via Nelson County Sheriff's Office)
Crystal Rogers (Source: Family photo via Nelson County Sheriff's Office)

NELSON COUNTY, KY (WAVE) - Police said Tuesday was a "good day" after wrapping up a massive search for Crystal Rogers.

A search warrant was issued last week to search a farm where police believe a crime was committed in relation to Rogers, a mother of five who went missing in July of 2015.

"I'm not frustrated, I'm hopeful," Nelson County Sheriff's Office Detective Jonathan Snow said. "I think we're moving in the right direction."

Tuesday's search focused on the farm belonging to the family of her boyfriend, Brooks Houck, as well as another farm right next to it, located just off State Road 46 on Paschal Ballard Lane. The intensive search, on nearly 300 acres of farmland, is one of the last places Rogers was seen alive.

During Tuesday's search, police removed pieces of farm equipment, but wouldn't reveal why. Investigators carefully combed through every inch of the property. Dive teams were deep in mud and dogs helped check ponds.

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"We have several cadaver dogs out here to help us search," Snow said.

The majority of the 300-acre search site belongs to Rosemary Houck, the mother of Brooks Houck, who is the primary suspect in his girlfriend's disappearance. It's been more than a year since Rogers was reported missing, and recently, investigators have executed several search warrants.

Brooks Houck has told investigators that he, Rogers and their 2-year-old son were at the farm on July 3 of last year. He claimed they all went home together that night and when he woke up the next day, Rogers was gone.

"We just feel like it happened on the farm," Rogers' father, Tommy Ballard, said. "That's just the way I feel. It happened on the farm."

Tuesday was business as usual for Houck, as he walked the farm and fed cattle. His son was also outside.

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"I think Brooks has been worried the whole time," Sherry Ballard, Rogers mother, said. "I think he is really good at hiding his emotions and not showing it. But, I think deep down he is worried."

Tommy and Sherry Ballard said they think there must be something that led law enforcement back Tuesday, as the property already has been searched twice.

"I would say they were all intensive searches," Snow said. "We are just focusing differently this time."

Investigators were very careful about what information they released, and won't say if new information brought them back after obtaining a search warrant last week.

To the Ballards this search seems different.

"I feel like they are doing a really thorough search and I'm really happy with that," Sherry Ballard said.

Sherry Ballard also said she hopes the search will bring the family the answers and the closure they desperately seek.

"We're just at that point where we just want to know where she's at and we can bring her home," she said.

The Nelson County Sheriff's Office said the search will continue through much of Wednesday.

While Houck has been named a suspect, he does not face any charges at this time.

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