From Whispers to Roars

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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Police believe mummified body found in landfill is missing teen, Joanna Rogers


Police believe mummified body found in landfill is missing teen
AP

(10/24/06 - LUBBOCK, TX) - Authorities on Tuesday discovered mummified remains they believe belong to a 16-year-old girl missing for more than two years.

The remains, found in a landfill, are thought to be those of Joanna Rogers. She went missing from her Lubbock County home in May 2004.

Physical evidence found at the scene, including long red hair, make authorities confident the remains are hers. Investigators will use dental records and possibly DNA to identify the remains.

The search began about two months ago after Rogers' disappearance was linked late to Rosendo Rodriguez III, 26, late last year.

"It's going to bring a lot of closure to a lot of folks," Kathy Rogers, the teen's mother, said in the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal's online edition Tuesday. "It's not going to be only us who are crying tonight."

Last fall, Rodriguez was arrested and charged with capital murder in connection with the beating death of 29-year-old Summer Baldwin, whose body was found in a suitcase at the same landfill about 15 miles north of Lubbock.

She was five weeks pregnant at the time of her death.

Detectives tracked the suitcase back to Rodriguez through store purchase records, according to police reports.

During the investigation into Baldwin's death, police uncovered information on Rodriguez's computer that linked him to Rogers and subsequently named him as a suspect in her disappearance.

No charges have been filed against Rodriguez in Rogers' death.

During a court hearing about a week ago, Rodriguez claimed he didn't understand the proceedings dealing with a plea agreement he and his attorney had worked out with prosecutors months earlier.

The agreement called for Rodriguez to plead guilty to killing Rogers and Baldwin in exchange a life sentence.

Prosecutors have withdrawn the offer and have said they plan to seek the death penalty.


For more Information on Joanna click on her Highlighted name. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends.

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