Court document: Defendant said he saw son digging soon after Crystal Rogers’ disappearance

A newly unsealed court document sheds light on a location in the search for Bardstown mother Crystal Rogers’ body.

One of the defendants charged in the Nelson County murder case told Kentucky State Police he saw two men digging in Cox’s Creek soon after Rogers went missing in July 2015.

Steven Lawson told state police he saw Joey Lawson and Jeremy Thompson digging at 400 Thompson Hill Road within five days of Rogers’ disappearance, according to the state police document unsealed in Nelson Circuit Court Friday.

Lawson told state police he believed it was on July 4, the court document states.

Rogers’ mother reported her missing July 5, 2015, after having last seen her two days earlier. Rogers’ car — with her purse, keys and phone inside — was found along Bluegrass Parkway the same day she was reported missing.

State police said they met with Steven Lawson, whose name is also spelled Stephen Lawson in court records, at 509 Thompson Hill Road Nov. 21.

“He states that they were burning and digging at 400 Thompson Hill Road with a Skid-Steer. He stated that he was burning large amounts of wood in a hole at the request of David Thompson on the 509 side,” the state police document says.

A skid-steer is a piece of construction equipment often used for digging. State police said Lawson had previously “denied that the Skid-Steer had ever left the construction sites after Rogers’ disappearance.”

Both Steven Lawson and his son, Joseph Lawson, have pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to murder, along with charges related to evidence tampering.

Rogers’ ex-boyfriend, Brooks Houck, has pleaded not guilty to charges of complicity to murder and complicity to tampering with physical evidence.

Neither David Thompson nor Jeremy Thompson was charged in the case. An obituary indicates that a Jeremy Thompson, 46, of Cox’s Creek, died in November 2022, and his father, David Thompson, also of Cox’s Creek, died in 2021.

WAVE News reported that authorities were digging at the same location in Cox’s Creek in December, and the Nelson County prosecutor told the television station then that the work was being done in connection with a murder investigation. No information was provided then about what case they were investigating, WAVE reported.

Police and FBI have searched a number of locations over the years but have never revealed what they found or given any indication that they had located Rogers’ body.

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