Friday, September 11, 2015

Crystal Rogers: Brook Houck's Brother Officer Suspended

Crystal Rogers, 35, mother of five, went missing and her fiancé went on the Nancy Grace Show in which he was indicated for deception. He gave linguistic indication that the information he is withholding is critical to the case.  He did not issue a reliable denial, though he employed the language of persuasion which revealed the weakness of his statement.

Brooks Houck's brother is on the Bardstown Police Department and Chief Rick McCubbin has announced his suspension.

The family of Crystal has been suspicious of Houck, and concern has been raised that he may have had some assistance, or guidance, from his law enforcement brother.

Early on, police indicated an issue as Nick Houck's vehicle was "in for repairs" but not released, fueling speculation of evidence collection.

For specific deception in this case see the analysis:  ANALYSIS of BROOKS HOUCK

Lack of comment on his suspension "until further notice" signals a connection to the case.

Brooks Houck method of deception is to suppress information which has an element of emotion in it enough to provoke interviewers to discern "leakage" which may be valuable.

"Leakage" is simply the inadvertent release of information via the free editing process.

When a subject is asked (sometimes, repeatedly), "what happened?", if the subject possesses guilty knowledge, he will be thinking of what happened while carefully editing out damning information.  The words he chooses, however, will be closely associated to the guilty knowledge, within the brain, which reduces the internal stress of deception.  This is because there is a source of information to refer to, unlike fabrication of reality, which has no experiential memory (including emotion), and often lacks sensory description.

In the words chosen to avoid revealing what happened, the subject often signals critical information, including location.

A good example of this is in the disappearance of Ayla Reynolds, toddler from Waterville, Maine.

When Ayla's mother could not get information from Ayla's father, Justin DiPietro, she told media that he was not "cooperating with police."

This angered DiPietro who said, "Contrary to rumors floating around out there, I have been cooperating with..."

He employed the language, "floating around out there", which, when weighed against his personal or professional interest in truck driving, was seen, not as an expression common to someone who's "wheels are firmly on the ground", instead, signaling that Ayla's remains were likely dumped in water.

As he thought to defend himself from the mother's charge of lack of cooperation in Ayla's case, he was likely thinking of Ayla, perhaps weighted down, fearful of her "floating" up and being discovered.

This is a simple example.  Much more complicated analysis is necessary from the transcripts of a full interview where Brooks Houck may have, inadvertently, signaled where Crystal's remains may be located.

Here is the article from

Bardstown police officer suspended

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WHAS11) -- In this brief statement released Thursday Bardstown Police Chief Rick McCubbin said officer Nick Houck has been suspended until further notice.
McCubbin did not give a reason or any further details. WHAS11 learned Houck is suspended with pay.
Officer Houck is the brother of Brooks Houck, the boyfriend of missing Bardstown mother of five, Crystal Rogers.
Bardstown police would not comment on if it has anything to do with the investigation into Crystal Rogers disappearance.
We asked Rogers' parents about the suspension.
"We have no comment on that at the moment," Sherry Ballard said, Crystal's mom.

"The one thing I'd like to say is I want, I'd like to know why," Tommy Ballard said, Crystal's dad.

Tommy and Sherry Ballard learned about Houck's suspension while they were just across the parking lot at the Nelson County Courthouse in a custody hearing.

They are asking to see their youngest grandson, Crystal's son with Brooks Houck, 2-year-old Eli. The Ballard’s said they have not seen Eli since Crystal went missing more than two months ago on July 3.
They said the judge did not make a decision on Thursday.

"We are hopeful that we will get to see Eli," Sherry Ballard said, "We have to wait for that but I'm hoping it won't be very long and we will finally get to see him."
The Houck family did not have a comment on either the court case or the suspension.


lynda said...

Curioser and curioser. It sounds as though someone might actually be on the ball there. Peter, you say,
"The words he chooses, however, will be closely associated to the guilty knowledge, within the brain, which reduces the internal stress of deception. This is because there is a source of information to refer to, unlike fabrication of reality, which has no experiential memory (including emotion), and often lacks sensory description."

You also speak of liars, and that liars destroy. Liars often lie when there is no gain. My question is, can a true liar "get away' with lying, even using speech analysis. Particularly if they are fabricating reality. If they truly believe their fantasy, wouldn't it be experiential memory for them even tho they didn't truly experience it except in their own mind?
Is a pathological liar a sociopath? Are sociopaths pathological liars? Are the terms interchangeable? How does SA measure up for accuracy against a sociopath/liar? Though a monkey could figure out that Brooks had something to do with, or has even killed Crystal, he has leakage and his SA reveals deception because the mind struggles not to lie. Does the mind of a sociopath/pathological liar undergo the same struggle?

Anonymous said...

I think it is very odd for Brooks to withhold his child from the child's maternal grandparents, if Brooks is as innocent as he claims. Maybe the child knows something that Brooks doesn't want to be leaked?

OT - Deorr Kunz Jr.'s parents released a (strikingly familiar) statement last night. A "detailed report" is expected today, Friday, about the ongoing search and case details.


Statement Analysis Blog said...

Local PD are under a terribly unfair pressure. They have done the right thing.

Suspending with pay will anger some, but it allows for both a strong signal sent, and a reminder that in our land, we are given a judicial presumption of innocence.

It is a tough case.

I hope to have something more on the DeOrr or DeOrre case, too.


Anonymous said...

A truly homogeneous group for a homogeneous America.

Can woman be a roadway killer, too? One would want to think so.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe the kid had a hot wheels in his pocket at all. First sign of a scam (mer).

These days they recruit them based on their ability to prove their social consciousness. Their charity includes hacking, monitoring, touring homes wearing hoodies, postal theft, and attempted murder. Kidnapping and extortion is just a side-line.

Your book will fail when including the likes of Nancy Grace who promotes the federal idiocy and the "experts" who hawk bs.

Those people don't appear to be the type to buy the nonesense.

Anonymous said...

In recounting the day that Crystal went missing, Houck literally never mentions the children unless Nancy Grace specifically asks him where they were. He and Crystal supposedly each had at least one child with them at all times during this day, yet Nancy has to ask him "Who was with her at Walmart?" "What children did she return home with?" "Where was the baby while she was playing on her phone?"

He does not want to tell us which children were where.

HOUCK: When she left Wal-Mart on Friday, late afternoon, early evening, she showed a rental property that we have listed, in the Kentucky standard, in a large ad, multiple properties. She then left that and preceded home.

Only when Nancy asks him point-blank what children were with her does Houck tell us that two of the children had been dropped off and that two others were with her. He still avoids her question “what children,” instead telling her how many children.

GRACE: So Friday evening, she shows the property at a multi-property spot that had been advertised in the standard. She gets home after 5:00 and what children, if any, did she have with her at that time?
HOUCK: Two children.
GRACE: And --
HOUCK: The other two children had already been dropped off at their dad`s house.

Houck uses the passive voice, withholding who dropped off the children. Crystal had dropped them off after Walmart- this is the missing information in Houck’s first “left.”

Houck may also reveal in this response what is missing from the second “left”- Crystal picked up a child from another location. Crystal’s family saw her at Walmart with three of her children, including the two-year old baby (Houck’s biological child). Crystal then dropped off two of her children at their father’s home. Houck tells us that two children were with Crystal when she returned home. If this is true, she had to pick up another child (unless the child was somewhere nearby while she was shopping in Walmart). Alternatively, the missing information might be what Crystal saw when she returned home.

So why is the dropping off and picking up of children sensitive, and why did he try to avoid this topic? Because if Crystal dropped off two children, and brought two children home (information he tried to withhold), and one of those children was the baby (information he successfully withheld for the entire interview by using the distancing phrase “the children” throughout), that means he was home alone with one of Crystal’s daughters.

Which child was with him is a sensitive issue for Houck. He is evasive about which children were with Crystal because doesn’t want us to know which child was alone with him that day. He wants us to conclude that the child was the baby, his biological son.

But it wasn’t.

He was home alone with Crystal’s daughter when Crystal returned home for their “normal” evening.

GRACE: So that was Friday evening. What time did she get home, Brooks?
HOUCK: After 5:00.
GRACE: After 5:00. And what, if anything, did she do at that time?
HOUCK: It was a normal -- normal evening. At that point, she showed the property and came home.

Not only does he call the evening “normal,” he avoids the question. Nancy asks him what she did when she got home. Houck tells us again what she did before she got home.
Nancy asks him what they had for dinner. It was “nothing special or new.” He won’t tell us what it was.

He tried to withhold that two of the children were at their father’s. He successfully withheld who dropped them off there. He tried to withhold that he was alone with one of the children. He successfully withheld that it was Crystal’s daughter.

It’s a “normal” evening. He’s talking about “lights.” He wants a “clean name.”

If I were the polygrapher, I would be asking him questions about what he did with his Crystal’s daughter while she was at Walmart.


Foolsfeedonfolly said...

K.M.- Excellent post! Excellent use of deductive reasoning and Houck's word useage and lack thereof. Food for though, indeed.

Foolsfeedonfolly said...

I also noticed that of her five children,two are dropped off,and only the baby is mentioned from 5:00 on and only at bedtime. Was the baby up because Crystal was physically unable to put him to bed and sleep? All the lights on and the baby running around speak of utter chaos. Houck tells us what Crystal was supposedly doing (blaming the victim), but linguistically, he's just there silently observing the chaos...a highly unlikely scenario for any couple with a baby who's missed his/her sleep window. They're cranky, crying, hard to appease, hard to comfort, and definitely unhappy. Couple that with a couple that's arguing/fighting/at odds and he's not just sitting by silently letting her play games on a phone- no way! Nancy Grace should have asked what he was doing at that time? My bet is he'd have tried to divert back to what Crystal was doing. Nancy could/should have pinned him with what he was doing while all this was going on.

Anonymous said...


I also wondered about why only the baby was mentioned from 5:00 on. I wonder if the other two children eventually went to their father's house as well.

I also think it is possible that he waited until the other two children were asleep to dispose of Crystal's body. I think he perhaps took the baby with him, because if the baby woke up and cried, the other two children would notice that Houck was not at home.

I think that is perhaps why the baby was awake at midnight.

I certainly don't think it's true that the baby wouldn't go to sleep with any activity in the house. Are we to believe that nobody in that house ever stayed up later than the baby?


Trigger said...

Babies and toddlers have a way of falling asleep when they are placed in a car seat and driven around in a car.

It would have been easy for Brooks to have taken his son with him anywhere at night. The boy would have slept in the car until he was awakened.

Anonymous said...

You guys are clueless, the only child there that night was the baby! 2 kids we're at the father's house,1 kid was at her paternal grandmothers, the oldest lives with the maternal grandaparents. These poor kids never had any stability and only 2 kids have the " same" daddy