Joanna Rogers Found After 29 Months of Searching

Published: Oct. 24, 2006 at 9:10 PM CDT|Updated: Dec. 14, 2014 at 6:06 AM CST
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You've seen her face countless times on NewsChannel 11, and now one of the biggest missing person cases in Lubbock has some closure. After 29 months of searching, the remains of missing teen Joanna Rogers were found at the Lubbock landfill Tuesday morning.

Investigators were at the last leg of the search that took them to the landfill.  This came after many month of searching locally and nationally for her.

Joanna Rogers was 16-years-old when she went missing two years ago 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.

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Joanna Rogers Search Timeline
Inside the timeline of stories that were reported on in the search for missing Lubbock teen Joanna Rogers.

Then a hard lead and a series of events that would lead investigators to Rogers.  Authorities found that a man by the name of Rosendo Rodriguez had the last contact with Rogers. And it was later discovered he would be the same man accused of killing Summer Baldwin.  Her body was found at the landfill inside a suitcase.

This summer, Rodriguez, in a taped confession, admitted to killing the teen and throwing her body in a dumpster. That prompted a two month search for Rogers' remains at the landfill.

Lubbock authorities will send the remains found at the landfill for positive identity, but they are certain the body they found is that of Joanna Rogers. So, after two years of wondering where their daughter might be, the Rogers' family finally has closure.

"I'd like to thank the news media for being kind to us, but you have a special job tonight. You have a special job tonight to inform everybody who cared so much about our family to let them know that Joanna is home," said Kathy Rogers, Joanna's mother.

Rogers Family Extremely Thankful To Searchers
Joanna Rogers' parents told the media Tuesday that every investigator put their heart into the search for their daughter, and for that, they say there are just no words to express their thanks.  As NewsChannel 11's Ben Lawson tells us, folks could feel the emotion at Tuesday's news conference.