LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - It was six years ago Tuesday when a Lubbock teen vanished during the night. On May 4th, 2004 Joe Bill Rogers' daughter, Joanna, went missing. He faced the nightmare of her murder when investigators found her body in a Lubbock landfill in October 2006.
Joanna Rogers was 16-years-old when she went missing from her south Lubbock home. An Amber Alert was issued after authorities believed she was taken under suspicion. Three weeks into her disappearance, the community held a countywide search for Rogers. More than 700 people showed up to help, but nothing was ever found.
A hard lead and a series of events lead investigators to Rogers. Authorities found that a man by the name of Rosendo Rodriguez had the last known contact with her. This was discovered after Rodriguez was accused killing another Lubbock woman, Summer Baldwin and her unborn baby. Baldwin's body was found at the landfill inside a suitcase.
Rodriguez, in a taped confession, admitted to killing Rogers and throwing her body in a dumpster. That prompted a two month search for her remains at the landfill. The announcement that Joanna had been found came at a news conference on October 24th, 2006.
Attorneys thought they had a deal worked out with a confessed killer, but on the day of his trial Rosendo Rodriguez changed his mind and turned down a plea agreement. Rodriguez was expected to plead guilty to capital murder in the death of Summer Baldwin. He also confessed to killing Joanna Rogers, but under the deal, he would not be prosecuted for her death and would instead get life in prison just for the Baldwin murder.
Rosendo Rodriguez, now 30-years-old, is on death row.
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