ricky-neal-morehouse Courtesy photo Robin Morehouse
“Little Ricky” Morehouse III

Ricky Neal Morehouse, III


Ricky Neal Morehouse, III
2 YOA (25 months old)
165 Cherry Street
Kent, IA
Union County
Case Number: 01-03131
March 3, 2001







The Latest

Family of boy killed in 2001 fire says officials are not doing enough to solve arson case

May 23, 2018 | by Steve Saunders, Fox42KPTM.com

UNION CO., Iowa (FOX42KPTM) — Rick and Robin Morehouse say even after all these years, the feelings are still raw.

“It just gets easier to deal with, but it never goes away,” said Rick Morehouse.
They are the father and step mother of two adorable and once inseparable twins.

“They were such good boys,” said Robin Morehouse.

Back in March 2001, Rick says he got home from work when the truly unthinkable happened.

“I get a knock on the door from the Harlan police department to tell me what was going on,” said Morehouse.

The officer was there to tell him that one of his twins died in a fire in what used to be known as the town of Kent, Iowa.

Read the Full Story

Case Summary compiled by Jody Ewing

Two-year-old Ricky Neal “Little Ricky” Morehouse, III, burned to death in the upstairs bathroom of his biological mother’s home in Kent, Iowa, on Saturday night, March 3, 2001.

Ricky and his twin brother, Reggy, lived with their biological father, Rick Morehouse Jr., and stepmother, Robin (Hogue) Morehouse, in Harlan, Iowa, where they enjoyed visiting their “Grandpa Keary” Hogue and “Great-Grandpa Larry” Hogue.

Morehouse house fireCourtesy photo Jeff Young, Creston News Advertiser
The home at 155 Cherry St. in Kent, Iowa, where 2-year-old Ricky Morehouse burned to death in the upstairs bathroom after first being doused with an accelerant.

The twins were spending the weekend in Kent, about 95 miles southeast of Harlan, with their biological mother, Rachel Page, when the fire — deemed arson by investigators — was intentionally set, resulting in Little Ricky’s death.

Officials ruled Ricky III’s death a homicide.

Reggy did not suffer any injuries in the fire.

For nearly two decades, Little Ricky’s unsolved murder has been a source of disbelief and outrage in the two southwest Iowa communities.

Based on witness statements and evidence gathered the night of Ricky’s murder, why wasn’t something being done? Why were officials holding off on making an arrest?

Father Won Custodial Battle

Rick Morehouse Jr. and Rachel Page never planned to share a future together, yet both wanted to be involved in raising their twin sons.

Rick Jr. married Robin Hogue on June 11, 1999 — the twins then just four months old — and the boys’ general welfare quickly became a major concern; after visits to Rachel’s house, the tots often returned home to Rick and Robin with unexplained injuries.

Harlan to Kent, IA, Google map

Map showing the alternative routes from Harlan to Kent, Iowa. (Courtesy Google Maps)

Rachel had difficulty controlling her anger, a close family member told Iowa Cold Cases, and it came as no surprise when Rachel ended up listed on the Department of Human Services’ (DHS) Child Abuse Registry — more than once.

Rick and Robin decided Rick needed to sue for custody of the boys, and after a bitter legal battle, the court awarded physical custody to Rick but granted Rachel unsupervised visits with her sons.

In March 2001, the boys were spending the month’s first weekend with their mother at her two-story home at 165 Cherry Street in Kent.

ricky-and-reggy-morehouse Courtesy photo Robin Morehouse
Ricky Morehouse (right) with his twin brother, Reggy

Rick Morehouse worked a late shift on Saturday, March 3, and he’d just arrived home that night when Harlan police officer Kevin Petty knocked on his door. There’d been a fire at Rachel’s home, the officer said, and one of the twins was dead. Rachel was at the Creston Greater Community Hospital.

Rick immediately left for the hospital — close to a two-hour drive — and Robin placed a call to the hospital and spoke with Rachel’s mother, Linda Page.

During this phone conversation, Robin learned Little Ricky had died in the fire but that his twin had suffered no injuries at all.

Rachel Lies, Fails Polygraph
Union County in Iowa
Union County in Iowa
Kent in Union CountyKent in Union County

In the night’s dark hours, Rick Morehouse’s headlights led him down winding highways toward an uncertain future. Maybe the police report was premature … maybe firefighters or neighbors had safely rescued both his sons from Rachel’s house. But if one of the boys had in fact died, how badly injured was the other twin? Could he possibly still succumb to smoke inhalation or burn injuries?

At the Creston hospital, Rick learned his son Ricky was dead, but that Reggy sustained no injuries at all and was perfectly fine. A full examination and preliminary reports about the fire indicated Reggy hadn’t even been inside the home when the fire broke out.

Rachel told both Rick and investigators the same illogical story.

The power had failed, Rachel told authorities, so she’d gone to the basement to fix the fuses and restore the power. She said afterward she’d gone to check on the twins, who were sleeping upstairs.

The power then failed a second time, she said, though no neighbors reported any outages.

Rather than try to restore the power again, Rachel said she instead decided to “clean out her car,” which sat parked in the driveway.

It was 10 p.m.

The outside temperature already had dropped below freezing to 30 degrees.

There’d been no precipitation that day, and the maximum wind speed had reached only 9 miles per hour.

Rachel told investigators that while working on her car outside, she saw flames shooting from the upstairs bathroom window. She rushed in, she told authorities, and said she found Reggy at the top of the L-shaped stairway. She said she carried him out of the house and then returned for Ricky but couldn’t find him.

Though the fire was contained to the upstairs bathroom, Rachel made no calls to 911.

The evening news had just begun when neighbor Sherry Trembly first saw flames shoot out from an upper window in the home next door. Trembly immediately called 911 to report a fire, and then ran outside where she’d be joined by Rachel’s aunt, Linda Roach, who lived nearby.

Trembly and Roach were two of the first to arrive on scene. The Creston and Lenox fire departments responded to the alarm.

Both women reported they found Rachel just “standing in the yard with Reggy” when they arrived. Neither woman saw Rachel make any attempt to return inside the home for Ricky, and, in fact, had not witnessed Rachel exiting the home with Reggy in her arms after the fire started. They’d simply observed Rachel standing outside with Reggy just moments after the fire began.

Though Rachel’s car was parked in the driveway with a clear view to the home’s front door, she’d not seen anyone enter or exit the house.

After investigators discovered evidence on Rachel’s person that appeared to connect her to being present when the fire started, Rachel submitted to a polygraph (a lie detector test), which she failed.

Volunteer Fireman risks own life to find missing child

Creston Assistant Fire Chief Mick Landers told officials that when he and volunteer fireman Eric Shawler arrived, the fire was largely contained to the upstairs bathroom.

Shawler then entered the home with a pre-connected fire hose and air pack to search for the missing 2-year-old.

As the fire spread outward from the bathroom, Shawler continued to make repeated trips into the house in search of Little Ricky, with no success.

The grisly truth about what happened to the toddler would not be known until firefighters extinguished the blaze.


The fire at 165 Cherry Street had been no accident. The Iowa Office of the State Fire Marshal said the fire didn’t result from “blown fuses” or any kind of “faulty wiring.”

State Fire Marshal investigator David Linkletter ruled the fire as arson, and told Rick and Robin Morehouse that an accelerant had been used to ignite the fire.

Rachel Luft today (Courtesy Facebook)Courtesy photo Facebook
Rachel (Page) Luft today

That wasn’t all, he told the couple.

The fire had been set in the home’s upstairs bathroom, and state investigators believed the accelerant had been poured onto both Little Ricky and the bathroom floor before being ignited and Ricky set afire.

The State Fire Marshal’s Office had other egregious news.

The home’s bathroom door had been shut where the toddler could not escape, resulting in a fire burning so fast and hot that the fiery bathroom floor gave way and fell into the dining room below, where firefighters eventually found Little Ricky’s charred remains.

Ricky Morehouse III Courtesy photo Rick & Robin Morehouse
Ricky Neal Morehouse III

There were no working smoke detectors in the house, though Rachel admitted to investigators she’d just checked on the boys and then gone outside to clean out her car just moments before spotting flames shooting from the upstairs bathroom window.

The death certificate for 2-year-old Ricky Neal Morehouse III stated he had burned to death and had not died of “smoke inhalation” as often happens in arson cases; the child had been burned alive.

Rachel Page — the niece of a county attorney in a neighboring county — also had telltale signs of having been present when the fire first ignited; her fingertips were burned, her hair singed.

Little Ricky’s surviving twin, Reggy, suffered no injuries, and authorities firmly believe he’d been taken outside the home prior to the arson fire.

Creston hospital personnel and law enforcement officials based this opinion on, in part, some of the following facts:

  • Neither Reggy’s clothing nor any part of his body had any detectable smell or traces of smoke, a common occurrence in structural fires.
  • Hospital reports confirmed Reggy did not suffer any type of smoke inhalation; even microscopic particles would be present had Rachel truly “rescued” Reggy from the location where she said she found him standing upstairs after the fire had already begun.
  • Eyewitness testimony by neighbors and first responders.

Union County Sheriff Rick Peil told Rick and Robin Morehouse the Union County Attorney has not yet charged anyone in the arson/murder because he feels there is insufficient evidence to ensure a conviction.


On Feb. 8, 2018, Ricky’s stepmother, Robin Morehouse, posted the following to her Facebook page (printed here with Robin’s permission):

I very rarely post about this, but I’m so disappointed right now! So, here is my little rant. An organization called “The American Investigative Society of Cold Cases” was willing to take on Ricky’s case pro bono if Union County would release the case file they have to them.

Unfortunately for us, Timothy Kenyon, who is the Union County Attorney is not willing to release the file. He is using the excuse that since it was the Union County Sheriff, the Iowa State Fire Marshal’s Office, and the Iowa State Medical Examiner who compiled all the documents in the file he does not have the authority to release it. He also stated any notes he has made himself cannot be release either. He is the county attorney, he should have the power to release the file since it’s his choice whether to prosecute or not.

Since he won’t release the file to let someone else do some work on Ricky’s case, why doesn’t he do his damn job?!?! Everybody knows who caused Ricky’s death, but nobody wants to hold her accountable. I suppose since the same people have been in power in Union County since before he died nothing will ever get done. Apparently those people do not believe Ricky deserves justice and that just breaks my heart.

~ Robin Morehouse, Feb. 8, 2018

About Ricky Morehouse
ricky-morehouse-gravestone-findagraveCourtesy photo Brad Albee, findagrave.com
Ricky Morehouse III is buried in the Evergreen Cemetery in Prescott, Adams County, Iowa.

Ricky Neal Morehouse, III, and his twin brother Reginald “Reggy” Morehouse were born January 23, 1999 at St. Joseph’s Hospital (now Creighton University Medical Center) in Omaha, Nebraska, the sons of Rick Morehouse Jr. and Rachel Page.

Rick Morehouse Jr. married Robin Marie Hogue in June 1999, and the court awarded custody of the twins to Rick and Robin after a bitter custody battle with Rachel Page.

Little Ricky’s funeral was held Saturday, March 10, 2001, at Coen-Beaty-Pearson Chapel in Corning, with burial in the Evergreen Cemetery in Prescott.

In addition to his parents and stepmother, Robin Morehouse, Little Ricky’s survivors included his twin brother Reggy; his grandparents, Steve and Linda Page, Ricky Morehouse Sr. and Debbie Morehouse, and grandfather Keary Hogue; his great-grandparents, Glenn and Anna Ruth Hardest, Neal and Mary Morehouse, Floyd Hinkle, Bill and Betty Page, and Larry Hogue. Other survivors included numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins.

Information Needed

If you have any information about Ricky Morehouse III’s unsolved murder, please contact Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Mike Motsinger at (515) 725-6010 or contact State Fire Marshal Division Investigator David Linkletter at (515) 689-1463 or Investigator Mike Lillebo at (515) 250-5458.

Copyright © 2024  Iowa Cold Cases, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


261 Responses to Ricky Morehouse

  1. Brenda Sue Feick says:

    I was the owner of the house at the time my son joey went into the burning house to find the boy his mother told my son that he was asleep in his room since we had lived there for years my soon knew wher e the bedroom was he was not there there was a landing where you could go to the right to a bedroom and left to another bedroom and straight into the bathroom the landing was on fire in front of the bathroom door and in the bathroom while his mother was drunk and at the neighbors she said the electricity went out which was a lie in my opinion she did it also my husband burned the rest of the house down so this could not ever happen again

  2. Natalia says:

    A reminder another year has gone by with no answers, no real investigation, and no justice. I really hope the new Union County Sherriff will look into the the unsolved cases in his jurisdiction.

    I wonder if the Creston News Advertiser
    will finally agree to do a story on Ricky’s case now that Kenyon is (basically) out of office…

  3. gay a appelhans says:

    well sweet little man 22 years ago you were brutally robbed and you life stolen from your precious heart my thoughts always turn you this time of year I will never forget that cold cold morning when you gained your angel wings,my heart aches that no one was ever held accountable for your murder you never got the chance to become a young man get married start your adult life you were robbed of that!!!what a sweet little baby you were I knew you would grow up and do good things im so sorry that was stolen from you!!!! I’m also ashamed as tax payer in iowa and union county that they haven’t held anyone accountable and just brushed it under the rug!!!!!you were a human and should have had the chance to live your life!!!!I think of you often and visist your resting place but know you arent there you are flying with the angels!!!!

  4. Gay appelhans says:

    Thinking of you today sweet boy praying for justice

  5. Pam L says:

    Dear Rick and Robin;

    I never post on this site, but after reading Little Ricky’s story, my heart is so broken, I felt compelled to send words of encouragement and support.

    Little Rickey looks a lot like my oldest son looked at Ricky’s age. Which made this story even more sickening to me.

    I don’t know if you are Christians, but even if you aren’t, just know I said a prayer for that sweet, innocent little soul that was your son. And the monster who did this to him, and all those that are shielding her from justice she deserves, will all pay their dues some day – they will be held accountable to God, and His son.

    God bless you both – I hope He brings you comfort every night, with the knowledge that your little boy is with Jesus, and can never be hurt again. You will both see him some day. of that I am sure.

  6. Gay Appelhans says:

    well today marks 18 years sweet little guy you never had a chance to grow up it breaks my heart you never got to live your life have your first bike ride learn to swim join scouts fall in and out of love,,,your life was stolen from you..your little soul will always remain young I know you are in heaven and know the truth and what really happened on that horrible night I am so sorry the system and the law failed you…with all the evil in world I hope you are at peace in heaven sweet little man….

  7. Mandy says:

    This little boy deserves justice…how horrible

  8. Gay Appelhans says:

    happy 20th birthday in heaven ricky you are not forgotten you live on in memories of those who loved you!

  9. L says:

    We need to get a retainer for the complaint That Tim Allen has filed on Union County officals!! This is a Shot for us to get Rickys case files and force Piel and Kenyon to own up to what has been covered up for so long! Please donate if you can!!! We need to raise $2,500!!! https://www.gofundme.com/f/attorney-needed-asap-for-ricky-morehouse-cold-case

  10. Francis Hammersmith says:

    The photo of this child caught my eye, and though i never knew him or anyone involved, my heart goes out to the family and anyone affected by this terrible tragedy. The loss of any child is a loss to the entire world. I wrote a short story one time that dealt with the loss of children. And though this excerpt is about different circumstances, it shines a light on the feelings we all share when a child is gone.

    “I saw an angel, dad. A real angel.”
    Gently, David leaned over and took Dev into his arms. He fought against the tears welling in his eyes. “You did?” The words came out broken, trying to sound happy and still containing the sobs looming in his chest.
    “The angel told me that some us get a lot of time,” Dev said quietly, “and some of us don’t.” His eyes sparkled with the excitement his exhausted body couldn’t show. He struggled to catch his breath and went on. “He said that when a child enters heaven, he is placed into the cradle of God’s arms. That can’t be bad, can it?”
    There was no word in any tongue he could have spoken to his son at that very moment. There was no feeling profound enough to contain the emotion of a child’s readiness to die. He did the only thing he could do. He held his son in his arms and wept.

    Know that even though I never knew this family, I grieve the loss of this precious child, and that not all empathy is lost in this world.

  11. julie says:

    This women should have the same done to her. God I hope the other brother does not have to see her!

  12. Penny says:

    The county attorney Kenyon is a crook. He has less morals than an drug addict I’ve ever seen. He should be fired for not prosecuting the mom. The reason he didn’t is because that crazy bitch has an uncle who is county attorney in next county. Let me guess was that hardisty? He was wierd also. They all blame me for getting an attorney barred but that attorney also was a crazy pedophile pervert. All the attorneys stick together weather they are right or wrong. I know other cases where Kenyon got the cops to lie on the stand and he lets his rich friends kids get away with rape of a minor. If your friends with Kenyon you can get away with murder rape whatever. He should have been fired a long time ago. I’ve never seen anything like it. My son went to law school just because of the crooked ass lawyers in this area .
    Motive for mother to kill one child…she can’t handle two or less child support to the father. She is a crazy bitch and should be put away or finally she forgot to take her nutcase medication. She’s just out there looking to kill some other innocent person or animal. Thanks to kenyon. And there are rapist wanting to rape again ….why… cauae they can get away with it. Daddys rich

  13. Ashley says:

    There has to be something we can do! Can we all call the Union Country Attorney and demand he release the information?? This story has bothered me since I first heard about it :( its obvious who started the fire and killed Ricky Jr.

    • TruthandLies says:

      Please add #justiceforRicky group on FB to follow the case and see documents that haven’t been released to the public.

  14. Brandy says:

    Anyone can have a mean bone in their body. I just hope questions are answered and this baby can finally get the peace he deserves.

  15. L says:

    A few people have said on here, oh she doesn’t have a mean bone in her body, she could never do this ect ect ect. The fact is, YOU NEVER KNOW. Yes, she has been founded for Child Neglect. The paperwork from DHS does not lie…especially after multiple times. This was before Ricky died. Who’s to say that after it happened, she didn’t have a coming to Jesus moment, change her life around, become this great person you all claim that she is? Probably got her self saved and thought she was good to go…does not change the facts! It was deemed arson by official investigators. The child had an accelerate doused on him before being set on fire. People are saying let it go let him rest in peace, let the family get on with their lives ect…That can never happen till the truth has been known! Do you think Madiline McCanns parents have stopped wondering and looking? Natalie Hollaway? There are too many what ifs to let it just go. And if you are any type of parent at all if it was your child you would want to know too.

    Robin, I applaud you.

    • Robin says:

      Thank you!

      • Franklin Johnson says:

        I think the whole thing was a cover up. The mothers relative was part of the neighbouring country attorney team. I knew one of the fire fighters that was there when they discovered little Rickys body. I happen to be Ricky Neal Morehouse III ‘s great uncle. The cold case crew for this incident should have the dacking or authority to get the files needed, released to open this case back up. Murder holds no statute of limitations. The case needs to be open and people brought to justice for this obvious hellatious crime. Just get it done please.

      • Kay says:

        A family member of the father im bitter about how this has never been solved and justice served. County attourney was her uncle which is a conflict of interest on all accounts. Everytime .Visits made and reports of spoiled milk forks on floor or unsafe environment by DHS he wrote them off. so dont you think he is going to protect her in this? someone needs to take his files and stand up for Ricky please! Thanks Robin M and justice

  16. Brandy says:

    Do the know what accelerate that was used?

  17. Brandy says:

    Robin for one I was raised with that family, yes I I haven’t been around for yrs, but I do keep in contact with them. Also you can’t say that Rachel is my friend when you have no clue, I talk to Rachel, she was at a funeral the same as I. Do I have hard feelings for her, No, I guess I feel the entire story not just one side or what I’ve heard from this person or that person. My brothers beat beat f was shot point blank in the head, murdered, his fiance was also shot and survived, yesterday marked the anniversary of nothing being solved, my cousin was hit by a rock truck, he took his own life because of the brain damage he endured from that, do I hate anyone involved no, but I can stop to feel both sides. As I said before I didn’t say she did/didn’t do it, but it’s not meant to be online bashing people because in the end what will you get from it, it’s gonna make more hurt feelings, and you still have a baby that’s gone.

    • Robin says:

      You don’t keep in touch with Rick, I assure you of that. If you are keep track of him as well, it’s through a third party. So no, you don’t know Rick.

      You’re right, I don’t know your relationship to Rachel as you defend her so much I assumed you were friends.

      What do I get from this? I get justice for Ricky. Nothing more, nothing less.

  18. Brandy says:

    No not everyone knows the history as you, Rachel, Rick, and Reggy do. I just don’t agree that being online dive bombing everyones comment is gonna help anyone in the end, as you can not use any of the things you have exposed in a court setting now.

    • Robin says:

      You’re right, not everyone knows the history like we do. We are trying to get it out there though and we will use every avenue available to us.

      I reply to people because I want people to see the truth, as does Rick. I’m just more active on the internet than him and I have his full blessing. Ricky deserves justice. This is all for him. He didn’t deserve what happened to him. Everything can still be used against Rachel since there is no statute of limitations on murder.

      I know as her friend and a mother yourself, it’s hard to imagine this happened. It was for us at first too. Obviously, you’re not going to change your mind today, but maybe someday when it all comes out. That will be soon. Just keep an open mind when you hear or see things about your friend that you probably don’t want to.

      I don’t know you, so I have no hard feelings against you. What you are doing is what you think is right. I totally get it. Like I said, this is all for Ricky. I will never give up until justice is served.

  19. Brandy says:

    I’m not here to say yes or no, but I do know alot of people whos hearts have hurt because of all this. I as a mother couldn’t imagine to purposely murder your own child, but as I have found mine almost dead from suicide.

  20. Brandy says:

    Because I know she’s switched nursing jobs around this time. That would be why. So no my comment wasn’t foolish.

    • Robin says:

      No she didn’t; she transferred from the Atlantic Care center to the Lenox one. At that time it was the same company that owned both. I do not know if it is still though.

  21. Brandy says:

    If she’s so guilty and have all these signs of her doing it, then why in the hell isn’t she paying for it, that’s right she pays for it every day just like you and Rick do, and his grandparents. I can’t imagine what it feels like to lose a child, but again there’s another child involved, the last time I seen Rachel in February, obviously Reggy still communicates with his mother and has that right, again I truly believe Reggy is the one who’s suffered the most out of this entire thing. It will never bring Ricky back, nobody will truly know what happened that day except the baby that’s in heaven.

    • Robin says:

      That’s a perfect question to ask to Tim Kenyon. So go ask him. Make him explain why he failed at his job in representing Union County. I believe that has already been explained too though. It seems you only read what you want to.

      I actually agree with you that Reggy has suffered more than anyone in this. I have never said he doesn’t communicate with her. I have even stated they had a good relationship up until fairly recently, when she tried to pawn her bills off on him.

      We all know what happened. Some people just don’t want to admit it. Rachel herself places only her, Ricky and Reggy at the scene. The Fire Marshall also has determined the fire was arson. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out.

      Pretty soon, and I mean very soon, people are going to see the truth. It has been years in the making, but it is going to come out. Rachel knows this as well. I wish I could tell you everything, but you’ll see soon enough for yourself.

      • Chris says:

        It’s been five years since this comment was made. Are their any updates to this case? Has Rachel been charged?

        • Justice says:


          Unfortunately, even though the death certificate was updated to the correct and factual cause of death… Union County will not proceed without new evidence. There are people out there … even a few at the scene of the crime, that police have not spoken to. They do not want to come forward and speak with law enforcement, due to the corruption and possible backlash from certain individuals.

    • kailashields007@gmail. says:

      And the mother…..

  22. Brandy says:

    Robin I’m well aware of what was said in other statements, and I myself know how the process goes when hired or already working at a place. Thank you though for attempting to point that out.

  23. JAJones says:

    Lies. She has never been on child abuse registry & has always had custody of the boys. There also were never any unexplained injuries. Although stepmom continually reported her to DHS, no reports were ever found to be true.

    • TruthandLies says:


      I have seen the reports…yes, she was founded of child neglect/abuse… multiple times. Have you asked Rachel about it?

      Perhaps, you’re unaware that ‘criminal’ charges are not always pressed when someone is founded of child abuse. Basically, someone can be on the child abuse registry and not have a felony or misdemeanor for child abuse…make sense? Why would someone not be charged criminally one would ask? Well, great question…the last founded report from what I can tell was finished after the fire. In the report, it was recommended that Rachel be criminally prosecuted…however, she never was.

    • Robin says:

      Would you like to see the reports? I have them all and I’m willing to show them unlike her. It wasn’t just me that reported the injuries to Reggy either. Several people did including the hospital. They called because we couldn’t explain his broken leg. Why couldnt we you ask? Because she couldn’t either and it happened in her care, yet we were the ones to finally take him to a doctor. That and he had stiches above his brow, completely bruised up back from being hit by Jeff, and was involved in a single car accident while riding with Jeff because Jeff was driving drunk.

    • L says:

      Show us your proof, as they have showed us theirs…Just saying.

  24. Corey says:

    Damn!! She is one ugly woman. She needs the firing squad. My ex wife was charged with child endangerment for slapping my son around. She lost her rights as well. And this fat piece of white trash still walks the streets??! You must have the worst set of investigators. There is enough evidence to charge her just based on reading the story. Sick baby killer. How you can put your ugly mug on Facebook is beyond me!! You need a new sheriff in the office!

  25. Jessica says:

    We need harsher punishment for child abusers in iowa! Thoughts and prayers to find justice this child deserves.

  26. Cindy says:

    Our judicial system sucks….period!!!

  27. Justice says:

    It’s a hard day today for many people I’m sure …Including myself. I’ve been turned around by every official involved in this case, and when an opportunity came to help open this investigation, it was turned down. For anyone who thinks this will be another lost case after my thesis is done, you’re wrong. I won’t stop…I can’t stop, the media is coming and the pressure will intensify. This is not over, and it won’t be until Ricky’s case is opened and the truth comes out.
    I want to thank Robin Moorehouse for helping me with my project and always being there to answer questions and giving me more of a reason to keep going!

    • Stay Strong, Keep Fighting For Justice! says:

      You keep going! There are many people behind you I’m sure. Thank you for your efforts to help Ricky and his family the justice they deserve.

    • Madonna Jacobson says:

      Premeditated too if Reggy was outside, unharmed.

      Money talks. I’m guessing bribery had, or still has, taken place. Very very sad. Don’t ever give up.
      Vote these Criminals out of office for poor little Ricky.

  28. Stay Strong, Keep Fighting For Justice! says:

    It is unbelievable that this young child’s psychopath’s mother has not been held accountable. Appears to be total incompetence by law enforcement.

    Fortunately Ricky is now in heaven while his whack job mother will burn in hell for eternity.

  29. Brandy Haffner says:

    He was found below the bathroom where he had fallen through the second floor, he was also found with accelerant on him, and it was in the bathroom.

  30. Jim Farrell says:

    I can only assume that the statement “did not die of smoke inhalation” means that smoke was not found in his lungs. Does anyone else think it possible the child was dead/killed before the fire started?

    • Robin says:

      Jim, he was not deceased first. His cause of death is thermal injures. No smoke in his lungs because his airways were literally burned before the smoke could get there.

      • Natalia Mills says:


        I tried to contact you via email a few years ago. Jody and Tim as well. I only heard back once. I still am waiting to go back and do my senior project for my bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice. I would be so happy to have your blessing to do so and reach out to a few contacts Jody sent me. If you and/or Rick would be willing to do an interview for my thesis when I go back to school I would so appreciate it. Would you please consider?

        • Jody Ewing says:

          Natalia, I responded to you via email tonight, and will check back in with you tomorrow (Thursday). Thanks so much for writing and your willingness to help us work toward justice in Ricky’s case!

        • Robin Morehouse says:

          Natalia, first off I want to apologize for not getting back to you sooner. I talked to Rick the same day I saw your message and then I spaced off replying and that’s my fault. Again, I apologize.

          You have both of our blessings as wells as Reggy’s. We would be happy to do an interview with you and answer any questions you may have. Ricky stated he would like it if you could work it around his work schedule. He generally has most weekends off. If that won’t work for you he said he could always participate over the phone. Looking forward to hearing from you. Thank you for taking an interest in Ricky’s case.

          • Natalia Mills says:

            Thank you so much, I look forward to speaking with you soon! I will reach out via email instead of on here next time.

            Also, thank you Jody for taking the time to help me and Robin connect.

  31. Mike says:

    It’s been sixteen years since this innocent child was murdered by his own mother.Isn’t it time that the authorities charge the mother with his murder and prosecute her?This murdering bitch should be behind bars paying for her crime!! I am outraged that justice has not been meted out in this case!!!

    • Judy says:

      You are believing lies written by people who are ignoring the truth.

      • L says:

        What is the truth then. Can you tell us what happened that night, why so much evidence points to the fact that a MOTHER killed her son. Mothers is the name for God on the lips and hearts of all children. Do you even wonder what poor Ricky went though, or are you just so damn set on defending a monster

    • kailashields007@gmail. says:

      I totally agree!! As a mother I would never just stand outside while my son is inside the house burning! The statements I have seen and heard all point to the mother. I live in the same small town as the father and the fact that they have let this case go cold and not investigated her further makes me ill! Plus, why didn’t she grab both boys?! Shes a strong woman. Its fishy that one boy was burnt alive and the other had no trace of smoke on him. But yet he was on the landing.You would think the police department and detectives would want justice for Ricky and his family!! If the mother is innocent why won’t she do interviews to TRY to clear her name!!

  32. gay anne appelhans says:

    16 yrs ago tommarow you became an angel Ricky you are never forgotten and are missed by many my deepest sympathies to the entire family and my prayer is that the truth of what really happened that horrible night would be discovered and all the false allegations would stop………..it was a tragedy a horrible tragedy making allegations and gossiping and trying to be judge and jury isnt going to bring this precious baby back I will NEVER believe Rachel hurt her son NEVER and neither does the legal authorities in union county or they WOULD have prosecuted her or someone.I went to hospital and saw Rachel after this horrible tragedy and the greif and sadness she was experiencing was real …………blessing and peace to everyone on this sad anniversary of this tragedy

    • Robin says:

      Gayanne, I have replied to you before on here but you never replied then so I will offer the same thing again. If you would like to see DHS reports that prove Rachel abused or neglected her children, I will be happy to provide them to you.

      I can also assure that many legal authorities do think she did this. Just because she has not been prosecuted doesn’t mean anything. This “horrible tragedy,” as you call it, could have been avoided if Rachel had not done what she did. This is not just gossip; there is evidence that shows what happened. I’m sorry you choose to not want to believe it. Although, I do expect that since you are a friend of Rachel’s.

      I don’t know why you are claiming you were at the hospital that night to visit Rachel because I know you weren’t. It was her parents, brother, sister-in-law, Rick, me, my sister, and various authorities. The only person she would let in her room that night was Rick. She wouldn’t even let her own family in. So please don’t come on here and claim something that is completely false.

      Finally, let me tell you a bit about her grief and sadness she was experiencing after this. The week between Ricky’s death and his funeral Rachel decided to go shopping in Des Moines. She bought all kinds of new stuff for herself with the donations people gave her. Even got her hair and nails done. While she was doing that, Rick, myself, and Rachel’s mother were planning Ricky’s funeral. Rick, myself and one of Rick’s aunts were also meeting with DHS that week to get them to explain to us how they failed Ricky like they did. Shows where her priorities were.

      • Gay appelhans says:

        I visited Rachel the day after at the hospital Rachel at one time was my niece my heart aches for your loss I knew her as a child not a adult I was not there I don’t know what happened but am truly saddened by this loss I to hope u get the answers you deserve I’m sure you your heart longs for answers

  33. Cody says:

    I’ve never read nor heard of anything so unbelievably EVIL in my life. I thought I was hallucinating while reading this. As a father, and as a human being, tears are shed for this young boys soul..
    This screams of an open and shut case! I mean what more do they need? I only wish I could be of some kind of help. Prayers go out to the family.
    Respectfully- Cody

  34. anonymous says:

    The surviving twin (Reggy) needs to hit the mother with a civil wrongful death lawsuit before the civil statute of limitations expires. Although there is no criminal statute of limitations for murder, there is a civil statute of limitations for a wrongful death action. Since Reggy was a minor at the time of his brother’s death, the SOL will “toll” until his majority. Make the woman answer questions under oath at a deposition.

  35. Lori Valderaz says:

    I can’t believe you can get away with a murder & a horrible way to die because you are related to someone. This is unreal in this day & age!!! Why is no one outside protesting & picketing the Uncle’s office & home. If you can protest a Lion being killed where is the outrage over a defenseless little boy’s death. esp. being killed by his crazy mother!!!

    • LuAnn says:

      Bring Rachel here in Mitchell County where I live…They would have thrown the book @ her here…Not enough evidence my ass……There was plenty of evidence…sounds like she wasnt a very good mother…There is plenty of evidence to convict her. They need to reopen this case and get off their asses!!..No excuses…….Her parental rights to Reggy should also be terminated.and Robin then should be allowed to adopt Reggy..By reading this I know that Reggy loves his mother but just by the comment he made..Why did she kill Ricky? Young children are very observant and inquisitive & pick up on things very quickly…especially in their surroundings…Justice needs to be served not only for Ricky but for their family….My deepest condolences to the family….God Bless You & May Sweet Little Ricky RIP….

  36. CSJ says:

    Beautiful Boy

  37. Connie Burch says:

    sadmy boys lived in kent about that time…scary

  38. Cyndi Treu says:

    poor little brothers I hope Reggie has had as happy life….in spite of his terrible loss. The years have not been good to the birth parent by the looks of her fb pic….

  39. Gay Appelhans says:

    rip little precious Ricky 15 yrs ago you went to be with the angels your life was short but you live on in our hearts everyday precious boy,

  40. Oh my god thats so horrible and sad

  41. Diane Wright says:

    The afterlife is the truth…she or whoever did this horrible crime will pay for what they did…not in this life, maybe..but guaranteed in the next and it will not be fun….monster!!!!

  42. How on earth was she not prosecuted for this ghastly crime?

  43. Tammi Smith says:

    ? why is she not arrested. No one in or out, cold out and she is cleaning out her car with one child, she has burns on her fingers and hair> I am not a forensic specialist, but come on!!!

  44. This is heart wrenching . Who ever set that poor helpless child on fire needs to have that done to them. Pure evil

  45. This woman sounds like Susan Smith v. 2.0. :( I wonder how his brother is doing.

    • Reggy is doing wonderful. Very responsible 17 year ago old and gets awesome grades in school. Rick and I are very proud of him.

    • Robin- did you adopt him

    • Unfortunately, I have not legally adopted him since his mother would never sign off on it. Doesn’t really mean anything though; he is still very much my son.

      • Casey England says:

        Hi Robin. I’ve enjoyed reading your articulate, well thought out comments on here. Do you have an opinion on why charges were never filed beyond ‘not enough evidence’? I read that Rachel’s uncle was/is an attorney- did that have anything to do with it? It just doesn’t make sense. She had singed hair, burned fingertips, not to mention the failed polygraphs. What more does the DA office want?? I feel certain she would be convicted by a jury of her peers.
        Do you know if they ever found any accelerants in or around the house that she may have used?

        • Robin says:

          I really wish I knew why charges were never filed. The only thing we can think of his because of her uncle, Ed Hardisty. When you’re in small towns like that if you’re connected to right people you can pretty much get away with anything. I do know multiple times DHS recommended child abuse charges against her in Adams County, but it’s ultimately the county attorney’s decision and her uncle would always decline to prosecute. By the time he was voted out of office it had been several years and at that point nobody was actively investigating so the case just sat like it continues to today. He ended up being county attorney in Sac County after that where he has also been accused of misconduct.

          The state fire marhsall’s office brought in dogs to sniff for accelerants. They alerted that there was something when taken to what was left in the bathroom. David Linkletter later told us that they believed it was charcoal light fluid that had been used as an accelerant.

          • Peggy says:

            I KNEW IT WAS HARDISTY! HE IS BUDDIES WITH THE ATTORNEYS OVER HERE. EVEN BOUGHT A HOUSE OVER HERE SO THEY COULD ALL PARTY TOGETHER. Kenyon had that guilty look on his face like he does when he is lying when they talked to him on the news. He is just as guilty as she is for not convicting her. Conspiracy?

          • Sally jessie raphial says:



  46. Lynn LaRue says:

    Poor little man she’s a monster hope they get her

  47. Cat Vogel says:

    outrageous and heartbreaking. They should have locked her up and thrown away the key

  48. This is outrageous, she needs to be in prison. Being related to a neighboring county attorney has something to do with her being free – I’m convinced

  49. Kayla Kay says:

    They need to make an arrest!

  50. I so agree with Kayla Kay . This is so heart breaking for this young child.

  51. Laura says:

    Robin. I wonder how reggy and Rockies families feel about your public bashing of this case in general. Please ask for thier blessing before commenting again. We understand your frustrations but going public like that absolutely is wrong to do to Reggy.

    • Robin says:

      Well since I’m not “publicly bashing” this case I’m not sure what you are trying to say. Since I am one of a few people who want the authorities to do the right thing I wouldn’t say I’m bashing anything; more like bringing awareness to a miscarriage of justice. And since I’m still married to Ricky (yes, that’s how it should be spelled) I’m pretty sure I have more than just his blessing but his full support since he knows about everything I have ever written about the case. Also, Reggy knows as well. Unlike some people (Rachel), I do not hide behind family friends to do my talking and bad-mouthing for me. I have been very upfront about my thoughts and feelings about Ricky’s death since they day he died.

      • Sandy R says:

        That’s a very decent reply, Robin. Kudos to you for keeping your anger in check in such a horrible situation! I just can’t stop thinking about the poor little boy..I hope and pray justice WILL BE SERVED.

    • Robin says:

      Oh, I forgot to add, if you go all the way back to 2001 and read the Des Moines Register is the first one who made this public, not me.

  52. She’s disgusting. She had to of done it. I wonder if she did it to him because he was named after his father. Anyone that can hurt a child is warped. She should be in jail and definitely not working with the elderly or children.

  53. Kayla Kay says:

    How is there not enough evidence for a charge? This “Mother” deserves to be set on fire and burned to death.

  54. Diana Wilson says:

    She had to have done it. Lie detector test? Poor child. God carried him to heaven.

  55. Gay Appelhans says:

    thoughts and prayers go to the family and may peace fill your heart,not a year goes by I don’t think of that precious little boy who is forever a angel

  56. Robin says:

    I believe it’s called 244th Street now because the town of Kent was disincorporated in 2003 and it’s now just considered a part of Union County.

  57. upinomaha says:

    I am unable to find a “Cherry Street” in Kent IA using Google maps. Has the street name been changed?

  58. Sandy R says:

    Oh that poor, poor baby! This just breaks my heart! In this day and age, it amazes me that this case can’t be solved. Especially with such blatant evidence! Who leaves small children in a house AT NIGHT with no power, to go clean out their car? I can only hope and pray that Little Ricky’s last few moments were quick. It’s terrible to think about how much that little boy suffered! Something that has bothered me..would there be a reason that she wanted one twin dead and not the other?

    • Robin says:

      Sandy, I am not saying this is the reason, but she has always favored Reggy. Even when Ricky was alive the favoritism of Reggy was very obvious to most people.

      • Sandy R says:

        Robin..that is so sad. But I have seen that before, and it’s so heartbreaking. Ever since I read about this case, I have felt so badly for Ricky. I know he’s dancing and playing happily in heaven, where everyone loves him the same!

      • Jody Ewing says:

        Like Robin, I am not saying this is the reason, either, but Ricky did share the same given name as his father. “Transference” (redirection of one’s feelings to a substitute) is very real, and it’s “possible” she favored Reggy over Little Ricky because Ricky was a constant reminder of Rick. Obviously, Rick did nothing wrong, but if the suspect wanted to hurt him or get back at him but had no way to do so, his namesake child unfortunately could have become the “next best substitute.”

        I am not a psychiatrist/psychologist and the above is just one possible theory.

      • Kelly Smith says:

        Imo Ricky was the victim due to his name . I believe The biological mother had to have so much bitterness in her that when she int Dr acted with her son Ricky her hatred was there .
        I pray they arrest her and she should absolutely Not be employed at nursing homes since the residents there are just as vulnerable.

  59. Diana says:

    Tim Kenyon is the attorney for Union County. His email address is…


    Again, I’m encouraging everyone on this blog and beyond to rally and email, write or call Sheriff Piel or Tim Kenyon for help with this case.

    I’ve emailed them both a letter. If I get a response I will share it.

    • Jody Ewing says:

      Diana, thank you so much for encouraging everyone here to get involved! There is definitely strength in numbers, and with the solid evidence documented by the state fire marshal’s office, there’s really no reason this case can’t proceed. Rachel even admitted to investigators that when she was outside “cleaning out her car” she had NOT seen anyone enter or exit the home. The fire marshal’s office made it quite clear this was not a “faulty electrical wiring” fire or any other type of accident; it was ARSON and started by an accelerant that burned alive a child locked in an upstairs bathroom.

      In addition to Nancy Grace, another contact person would be Daniel Slepian, a producer with Dateline NBC. His contact info:

      daniel.slepian@nbc.com or daniel.slepian@nbcuni.com

  60. Diana says:

    Special Agent in Charge Mike Motsinger at (515) 725-0030.

    For informational purposes, anyone can contact the Nancy Grace link and propose the investigative idea of Ricky’s case. A civil suit would be for the sole purpose of finding her responsible for his death and the peace associated with it. A civil suit may draw truths from anyone who may know more than they’ve shared.

    At any rate, I fully understand the monetary issues related to such cases and would suggest a fundraiser/s or continuing to look for someone who would take this case pro bono. It is possible.

    Until then, don’t give up hope. The Bible tells us all dark is eventually brought to light.

  61. Diana says:

    Have you contacted the special agent in charge at DCI?

    • Robin says:

      Yes, I am step-mom. I will talk to Rick about Nancy Grace because ultimately it is his decision. We have contacted newspapers and tv stations before. A couple newspapers did articles. We have not contacted the DCI agent because we did not known one had been assigned until recently. Also, we briefly considered a civil suit, but she has nothing to sue for so I don’t think any lawyer would take the case unless we paid a rather good amount upfront. And that’s just not possible.

  62. Robin says:

    My last conversation with Rick Piel (unioncosheriff@iowatelecom.net)

    Rick: “As you are aware then, I was there and to my knowledge no new evidence has surfaced to look at the case again. If there was something new to look at I would be more than glad to take another look. Rick ”
    Me: “Well, that is upsetting. I always thought you had to investigate to find new evidence. Perhaps talking to Reggy since he does remember that night. But I see that you won’t. Sorry I bugged you about it. Guess I know now if you kill someone in Union County you will get away with it.”

    I do not know who the current county attorney is unfortunately. I did have several friends who submitted Ricky’s story to various television shows; sorry I do not remember all of them. The main thing with all that contacted us was that unless Rachel was interested in being on the show/talking they were not interested in profiling the case. Also, Senator Nancy Boettger of Iowa personally sat down with my family and assured us she was going to look into the case and get something done about it. Nothing ever materialized from that either.

    Just this past Sunday Reggy asked me “why do you hate my mom?” I said “Reggy, I don’t hate your mom; I just don’t like some of the things she has done. Otherwise she would probably be a nice person. Then Reggy says “well why did she kill Ricky?” I said “That’s a question you need to ask her, but don’t expect an honest response if any.”

    • Diana says:

      Okay, so you are step-mom, correct? Please go to the Nancy Grace site and fill it in. It can’t hurt :-). When you are done, encourage someone to be #3.

      I have drafted a letter to Rick Piel, but waiting for approval as I’ve used some info from this site. When I receive a response I will post it.

      In addition, I have a friend who is a homicide investigator. She specializes in familial homicide. Once I speak with her, I’ll post her information. Anyone who’d like to contact her should.

      A letter to the editor of surrounding newspapers dispelling the injustice in this case and the fact that it appears to be “sitting” would be beneficial. I don’t believe there is a statute of limitations on murder so any factual evidence brought to light, all the people involved highlighted (again) at this point is beneficial. So too is the fact that voters new to the area might take Rick Piels work, or lack of, into account when voting time rolls around.

      Has the family thought of a civil case against the mother?

      Poor Reggy. He is in my prayers. To be linked to such devastation at the proposed hand of a parent, so sad!

    • Michelle Jacobs-Anderson says:

      such a sad story. :(. prayers for the family.

    • Brandy says:

      There was an announcement on 103.7 this evening about all this.

      • Justice says:

        Yes, and the full story on Fox42! Little Ricky’s case is starting to get the attention it deserves…We still have a ways to go though.

  63. Diana says:


    This is the website to send a email to the Nancy Grace show. It’s quick and easy. If enough people email, perhaps she will look into this and highlight it.

    Yes, I emailed her! Who will be 2nd?

  64. Diana says:


    Above link will list take you to the Union County IA Rick Piel page. On that page is email, phone, address etc.

    Anyone truly concerned in justice for Ricky please choose to use one of these methods of contact and write Rick Piel. Encourage him to use the evidence he does have.

    Writing the county attorney as well.

  65. Diana says:

    Would you post his email?

    Do you know who the current county attorney is?

    While you feel you are getting nowhere, there is encouragement in numbers.

    • Peggy says:

      The county attorney is kenyon. Remember they said she was the niece of the county attorney in adjoining county? Thats why nothing has been done. Look at the Stewart kid story. Its who you know and who you blow around here.

  66. Diana says:

    Who is the current sheriff and county attorney?

    Everyone on this thread, including myself, could make a chain of phone calls, letters, emails to these individuals encouraging an arrest with the “evidence” available. At minimal the dust could be swept off the case and it be brought to the public’s attention again. Wouldn’t be the first time a conviction went through on circumstantial evidence, and 14 years later, seems worth the risk to me.

    • Robin says:

      Rick Piel is the Sheriff. I email him all the time; it does no good. His responses have always been when there is new evidence he will actively investigate again. I have told him several times that he needs to investigate to find new evidence. It seems it’s a Catch-22.

  67. Dear God – who does this? Smh

  68. Psycho b*tch needs to burn.

  69. Candace Hart says:

    Wtf is wrong with people!?????? Rip little one!!!!

  70. I remember this…..I can’t believe she is still free!! Where were the detectives???

  71. Wtf that should have been enough for a conviction!

  72. Angie Wunder says:

    Poor little guy. Hell has a special place for whoever did this.

  73. Poor little guy. I hope he gets justice and i hope whoever did this rots in hell

  74. Jade Hemsley says:

    Poor bub. I hope you get justice little one xoxo

  75. Poor little one :( Praying justice is served! How can people live with themselves when they do these horrific things?!?

  76. There are people out there who know what happened, they are cowards for not coming forward!

  77. Cold Justice needs this case!!! How horrible.

  78. what an angel he was then, and now

  79. Amy Joann says:

    Sounds like it was the mother!

  80. Jodi Frye says:

    someone needs to get her drunk and get her to confess. always honest when your drunk. than she needs to be set on fire. horrible to say but a TWO YEAR OLD!! Sick and twisted human to do that to a baby!!

  81. Sarah Adams says:

    This is beyond sick, the worst way to die and it happened to a 2 year old?!

  82. There’s no statute of limitations on murder, when they get more evidence, hopefully, he will have justice.

  83. why cant they re open this case???????

  84. Debbie Buck says:

    WTH. Why wasn’t she charged? This is BS

  85. Ashley Schmidt this is the one I was telling you about. Sad

  86. This makes me so angry. I hope the truth comes out.

  87. Whoever would commit such a horrible act of violence is a VERY ill human being.

    God, please rest the soul of this little boy, who didn’t get to live his life out. Amen.

  88. Lilac says:

    Boy Scouts in Illinois did a very thorough background check on volunteers. VERY thorough! And misdemeanors completely unrelated to children or violence exclude
    people from having any chance of volunteering. However, parents if Scouts might not be checked as carefully, or other states’ requirements might not be as stringent.

  89. Me too. Justice needs to be served for the family and friends also. My prayers all the way.

  90. Nathan Handy says:

    I hope this poor boy gets justice soon.

  91. Bobbie preston says:

    Why hasn’t this been taken to the Iowa supreme courts. There’s plenty of evidence and witnesses from the sounds of it.

    • Robin says:

      I wish it was that easy! There are channels that people have to go to to get to the Supreme Court. We have even asked for a special prosecuted be appointed by the Attorney General of Iowa and that was denied. I think at this point it’s been so long that nobody but the ones closest to it seems to care about justice anymore.

  92. joyce says:

    She now cooks at the school in Lenox. How is that possible if she is on the child abuse registry? Also is very active with boy scouts.

    • Robin says:

      I believe I can explain the job part of your question. In Iowa when a person is founded for child abuse the name goes on the Child Abuse Registry List for 10 years. Rachel’s last founded report was in 2003. She has only had the job at the Lenox school for about 2 months. I believe she was off the list before she applied and got the job. As for the Boy Scout thing, I can only assume they do not do background checks on parents as they have never asked Rick and me for background information either.

  93. Shannon Bradley says:

    Being his aunt on his fathers side, we have been trying for years to get something done about this. Thank you to the person or people who finally came forward

    • laura poisel says:

      It’s no wonder actual murder cases remain unsolved. Rumors, innuedos, National Enquirer style reporting and sloppy police work all lead to dead ends for sensible individuals seeking justice. Can’t you vultures get a life of your own and leave this family and others alone?

  94. Robin says:

    Reggy currently splits his time between Rachel’s (mom) and Rick’s (dad). However, around Thanksgiving 2013 he informed both Rachel and Rick that he would like to live at Rick’s permanently. Rick gave Rachel time to absorb that information before anything would happen, but just 2 weeks ago she informed Rick that she is not willing to agree the the new living situation for Reggy. Now Rick will have to take Rachel to court to fulfill Reggy’s request.

    • Jan says:

      Thanks for the information Robin. I am trying to imagine what his life is like.

    • Jody Ewing says:

      Oh Robin, I’m so sorry to learn Rachel isn’t willing to respect Reggy’s wishes. I often wonder what life must be like for him, knowing what’s publicly known about the incident that killed his twin brother. Judges often take a child’s age into consideration when the child chooses to reside with one or the other parent, and since Reggy will be 15 next week, I can’t imagine a judge not respecting his wishes.

      It surprises me that Rachel would want to step foot into any courtroom. Perhaps this might be a great opportunity to present the judge with copies of the State Fire Marshal’s report. Even if her attorney gets those records suppressed, the judge will still want to hear — in Reggy’s own words — why he prefers to live with Rick and you. Please do keep us posted, and I wish Reggy and your family all the very best.

  95. Jan says:

    Just curious, where is Reggie now? Who does he live with?

    This is a very fascinating story, but also very sad.

  96. Becky says:

    This is pure bullshit, Rick did NOT have custody of those boys. Rachel is an excellent mother!! Those boys are her life. That damn house had a fire in the same place before and the landlords were told to get it fixed. Rick is not the father this damn story makes him out to be. He is a worthless father, he does NOTHING for his son!!It has been 12 yrs now since this terrible terrible accident happened, why can’t people leave her alone and let little Ricky RIP.

    • Kim says:

      This site does not dabble in supposition or falsitudes, the case summaries listed on here state only the facts of a case that have been provided to the site by the investigating agencies. Please read the summary of this case carefully and note where the state fire marshal states that the fire was a clear case of arson, with accelerant being poured on little Ricky and in the bathroom he was locked in before being cruelly set ablaze. That means tests were run on the evidence recovered at the scene and it was determined that instead of the fire being the result of faulty wiring or a bad fuse box, accelerants were detected, and why would there be any kind of accelerant in a bathroom? If you have evidence that proves the fire was not the result of arson, then why haven’t you taken it to the police so that they can then clear your friend or relative’s name, isn’t that what someone would do if they truly cared about the mother in this case?

    • Robin says:

      You know nothing about Rick or or what he did/does for Ricky and Reggy so don’t assume to. He is a great father; then, now and forever! The only person now that can truly be the judge of that is Reggy and believe me he will tell anyone who asks the same thing.

      • Judy says:

        So a great father charges his teenage son hundreds of dollars to live in his home?

        • L says:

          Its called getting them ready for the real world. They get a job they pay some type of rent! I did it for 3 years as soon as I had a job! If you take care of every single little thing for a teenager they will not know how to survive in the real world.

        • Robin says:

          What the heck are you talking about? Another one of Rachel’s lies that you’ve heard I’m sure. Reggy pays HIS bills. We don’t make him pay us a penny to live here, Why don’t you ask her about how she tried to pawn off a medical bill that she is responsible for on Reggy. The hospital has the bill in her name, but the debt collector had Reggy’s name, that they should go after him and they got it FROM HER! Thank goodness he has parents (Rick & I) that truly care about him and helped him straighten that out. We don’t want to control him like she does. I can’t wait for people to see the truth about her and it will be soon. She puts on a very good show for some people.

    • Brent Busch (@brentbusch) says:

      Becky, accidents don’t begin with accelerants.

    • Daniel schaffer says:

      I own that house and my family has owned it since 1990. I lived there most of my life and there were no previous fires there. And her story to the cops is bull shit! I was not very old when the fire happened by my brother was and Rachel was at the neighbors drinking. We know this because we were also there landlords. My brother was 20 at the time of the fire and searched four Ricky in the burning house before the fire department arrived. Rachel kept telling him were he mite be n the house and told him that he was definitely not in the upstairs bathroom. Sharps burg fire department was first on the scene due to the neighbor two houses away being a volunteer. The fire had nothing to due with the house. Now you know the real story and the house has been demolished were the tragic death occurred.

      • taylor schaffer says:

        And dont forget the next day after she was at the neighbors carrying a case of beer in one hand and reggie in the other. She blamed it all on the house wiring. I was raised in this house. She is a horribal mother she shiuld be killed and burned alive just like she did to this poor little boy.

        • Jody Ewing says:

          Daniel and Taylor, thanks so much for sharing your input. Seeing one’s childhood home burn and be demolished is tough for anyone, but worse knowing what tragedy occurred there. Ms. Page may have tried to blame it on faulty wiring, but the general public knows that simply isn’t true. State Fire Marshal Investigator David Linkletter ruled the fire arson with an accelerant used to ignite the fire in the upstairs bathroom.

          As the general public also knows, there’s no statute of limitations on murder, which means the suspect in this case could still be arrested and charged with first-degree murder. Eyewitnesses (including volunteer firemen) were already on scene before the fire spread outward from the bathroom, at which time the suspect remained outside — with burned fingertips and singed hair. This documentation should still be in Little Ricky’s case file. It’s a file begging to be reopened.

          One person asked why people can’t leave [the suspect] alone and let Little Ricky “RIP.” Aside from the obvious — that Ricky’s last minutes of life were anything but peaceful and will forever haunt those who loved and lost him — there’s this thing called the Iowa Code, Section 707.2.

          Things lost in this fire: one innocent life, one family’s childhood memories, many families’ future joys and memories yet to be made, and one conscience. Justice, however, may still be found.

        • Judy says:

          The mother was still in the hospital the next day.

      • Dustie Burton says:

        Daniel and Taylor, I also remember discussing this with your dad as this tragedy unfolded when I live next door.

  97. Devan says:

    i guess my only questions would be 1. wth was she out cleaning her car that late? because if i had two little kids i wouldn’t be leaving them alone.. 2.she failed the poly test.. because that doesn’t scream that shes lying about something? 3. she said she found the one twin on the landing after she saw the house was on fire.. so it would make scene that the boy would smell like smoke even a little and they said he didn’t. So wouldn’t that seem like she was lying about other things if shes already lied about the smoke on the kids clothes? i don’t know it smells kinda fishy..

  98. Mike says:

    I just read that they have arrested a man for murdering the little boy in Mason City in 1994,so there is hope that the murderer of this little boy will yet be brought to justice.How anyone can be so cruel as to kill an innocent child is hard for me to fathom.After reading this story,I am convinced that the mother murdered her own son.What her reason was for murdering him is anyones guess,but it’s past time that charges are brought against her and she is punished for her crime.

  99. Erin says:

    The sad truth is so many people can get away with murder. If the police cannot hand a prosecutor evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, they won’t prosecute because juries have a history of non-conviction. Especially here in Iowa…look at how many ‘cold cases’ have had prosecutors who thought their cases were solid only to have juries acquit! (There’s “reasonable doubt” and then there’s common sense…so rare it’s like a super power!;) Lord, bless the victims and their families and punish the guilty, but when someone kills a family member or a child, punish them worse! Amen.

  100. Bless their Little Souls.

  101. Mandie El…We have had to remove parts of your very emotional post you wrote on January 24th due to some words that were offensive to a lot of our friends and readers. HOWEVER, I am going to repost what you wrote without the offensive words, so here goes: From Mandie El: “…who leaves the power off with 2 babies in the house? They need heat. This really makes me mad…they need to convict [the guilty person] and put her in general population and let them have her…” Mandie, while your original post was honest and straight from your heart, we do have to be aware that the victim’s families read everything that is posted and we do not want them to be even more upset than they already are. So many will agree with what you wrote. We just have to be careful HOW we write it. Thank you so much for your time, care and compassion in writing and I hope that you will continue to follow our Facebook page and our I.C.C. Website as well. Yours very truly, Kerry Connolly, Iowa Cold Cases, Inc.

  102. Gayanne says:

    ok I have known the mother Rachel all her life she does not know have a mean vicious bone in her body,I don’t what happened that night but do know Rachel and know she didn’t NOT hurt her child and has mourned this child for years…I also believe it is wrong to judge her and that this article is not accurate.if she was on child abuse registronstry she could not be a caregiver and work in a nursing home and she is and has been for years,I also know she has a close loving relationship with her 14 yr old son ….lets get our facts straight and lay off her………….

    • Jody Ewing says:


      Thank you for taking time to write. You are incorrect, however, in your assertion that if Rachel were on the state child abuse registry she would not be able to be a caregiver in a nursing home. There are many types of criminal background checks — for instance a check of FBI records (which are based on fingerprints), using fingerprints to check state criminal history records, a check of the child abuse registry or the sex offender registry, just to name a few — and a good number of criminal background checks *do not* automatically include a check of the state child abuse registry. In fact, a person with a history of substantiated abuse may actually have violations that will not appear in a state or even a federal criminal database. (See page 3 of this report by NACCRRA.org.)

      The child abuse registry data is primarily accessed and used by state licensing agencies and child care employers to screen persons who will be entrusted with the care of children, but some agencies do have the option of running this specific background check if they so choose. Every state has established policies and procedures in place for conducting both state and national criminal history record checks.

      In Iowa, access to child abuse registry records may be provided “to individuals, agencies, or facilities providing care to a child, but only with respect to disposition data and, if authorized in law to the extent necessary for purposes of evaluating a person who is employed or being considered for employment, report data, for cases of founded child abuse placed in the central registry,” as reported by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. A list of these individuals or agencies may be found under Use of Records for Employment Screening at childwelfare.gov toward the bottom of the page.

      Even with records available for employment within the educational field, documented cases do exist where child abusers, and even convicted killers, have later found employment and actually worked with children and/or as caregivers. For instance, Gertrude Baniszewski was aided by most of her children, including Paula Baniszewski, in the prolonged torture, mutilation and eventual murder of Sylvia Likens, a 16-year-old girl the Baniszewskis had taken into their Indiana home in 1965. While Gertrude was found guilty of murder in the first degree, daughter Paula was found guilty of second degree murder for her participation in Likens’ death, and she served time in prison before being released in 1972.

      After completing her parole, Paula moved to Iowa, and using the name Paula Pace found employment in Conrad, Iowa, with the BCLUW school district. She’d worked there for 14 years and was currently working as a teacher’s aide for special needs students when an anonymous tipster called police and said they should look into her background. When officials discovered Paula Baniszewski and Paula Pace were in fact the same individual, she was fired (on Oct. 23, 2012) from the BCLUW school district. The heinous manner in which young Sylvia Likens was tortured and eventually murdered was called “the single worst crime perpetrated against an individual in Indiana’s history.”

      With cases such as the above having come to light in the past several years, the vast majority of Iowa school districts (if not all — there is no way I can ascertain that information from every single school district) now employ criminal background checks that include child abuse registry checks for those seeking employment. It is up to each individual district whether or not they wish to perform checks on current employees who were hired many years ago before current policies were enacted.

      I did not and have not accused Rachel Page of killing her son Ricky Neal Morehouse III; Ricky’s case summary page merely reflects the facts in his case. If you are in doubt as to the veracity of any of those facts, you are free to contact any of the following individuals and/or agencies:

      • The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation (Mike Motsinger) at (515) 725-0030
      • Union County Sheriff Rick Piel at (641) 782-7717
      • State Fire Marshal Ray Reynolds or State Fire Marshal Investigator David Linkletter at (515) 725-6145

      Yours very truly,

      Jody Ewing
      Iowa Cold Cases Founder and Administrator

      • Billi Vavra says:

        Thank you for all you do and have done to assist all of the victims.

        • Jody Ewing says:

          Thanks so much for your wonderful comment, Billi! It really means a lot to us!

          • Tisha Hartman says:

            Jodi I think your comment shows your passion dedication and well educated facts this makes me sick and makes no sense at all I pray for justice for little Ricky he deserves to rest in peace and someone held accountable!!
            These facts more than definitely speak volumes to many questionable inconsistencies . This needs to be REOPENED !!!!

        • Judy says:

          You have been reading lies about the mother.

      • Brandy says:

        Jody Ewing, yes Rachel has worked as a caregiver for yrs, so no Gayanna is not wrong, I worked with Rachel many times.

        • Robin says:

          Brandy, Rachel has worked as a caregiver because she got the job before she was placed on the child abuse registry list. They wouldn’t have a reason to check since she had already been employed for a few years prior. That has been stated in other comments if you would read them before commenting yourself. I was be happy to show you the DHS reports confirming she was placed on the child abuse registry.

    • Robin says:

      I can actually explain why she works in a nursing home while being placed on the child abuse registry list in the state of Iowa. She worked at the nursing home first; therefore, they would have no reason to do a background check for that. If you don’t think she has been founded for child abuse, I would be happy to share the numerous DHS reports that will in fact show she has, multiple times. I will agree now that Rachel has a good relationship with Reggy, but let us not forget all the abuse Reggy has suffered over the years since Ricky died; Several unexplained injuries (broken leg, stitches, bruises, etc.), not to mention the verbal and emotional abuse he has suffered as well. Also, I can name multiple times where she physically assaulted the boys’ father, Rick, when she upset with him. Perhaps you should have all the facts before you start making assumptions as well.

    • Liz says:

      Yeah actually she could work those jobs. All the employer has to do is ask the state permission. Since she’s not been convicted of anything, no reason not to hire her. That’s kind of a poor excuse just to say she’s had these jobs. Well, she hasn’t been charged with anything. Plus the child abuse registry isn’t always public. I know of a convicted drug addict/dealer that got permission from the state to work in a nursing home. Her drug conviction was extremely recent so not difficult for the state to review.

  103. A.j. Gaddy says:

    Makes me so sick to my stomach!!! I hope justice is found for this precious soul!!

  104. Where is justice for Little Ricky :(

  105. Where is this piece of crap Mother? People are convicted everyday with less evidence. Hang her high.

    • Judy says:

      You are judging someone on lies someone has written about the mother.

      • L says:

        And what relation are you to Rachel where you are so easy to defend her

        • Brandy says:

          I do know the mother… Why on Earth would she kill one child and not both? That house had a fire in it in the same exact place that started, you ever think that door closed because the child hiding in there? I also know the father of these boys. But I do know that the person who suffers most is Reggy, how in the world do you think he feels with both parents fighting and pointing fingers, and he lost the other part of himself as twins always have some connections together. So let’s stop pointing fingers and let this baby rest in peace and stick by Reggys side. Nothing can bring back Ricky, and do you think Ricky would want this for any of them, I’m sure he wouldn’t. Rest in Peace baby boy.

          • Robin says:

            Brandy, that house did not have a fire in it before, contrary to what Rachel has told you. That has already been investigated.

            Tell me any other 2 year old that is going to close himself into the room that has the fire in it. The only room at that time until the floor gave way. It just wouldn’t happen. A child would run away from the flames if he could. Unfortunately he couldn’t, since the accelerant was poured right on him. That’s per the autopsy.

            Also, you don’t know Rick. You might have a long time ago, but you don’t now. You haven’t known anything about him for at least 19 years other than what your friend tells you and that’s not really knowing him.

            • gay anne appelhans says:

              I think union co attourney and law enforcement dropped the ball on this why this wasnt investigated more once it was ruled a HOMICIDE this baby didnt commit suicide for christ sake this is tragic!!!

          • TruthandLies says:

            Brandy, if I were to answer your first question…that would be speculation. Robin has only ever stated the facts. The fire was deemed arson. Not an accident….arson. I’m sure you know what the word arson means. It’s so hard to imagine that something like this could happen, but it did.

            As to your comment about Ricky…I think he would want justice. He had a whole life to live and it was taken away from him. You have to remember just because someone hasn’t been criminally prosecuted, doesn’t take away the fact a crime was committed.

            I also agree Reggy suffers the most. However, that doesn’t mean the truth shouldn’t be told…as bad as it is.

          • L says:

            No matter what, you never ever know people as well as you think. That baby is never gonna rest in peace as long as his killer is not brought to justice.

          • Laura says:

            He could Rest In Peace if his killer was punished!!

          • Pholinise says:

            May. Nope. Ricky can’t rest until Justice is served. This will NEVER go away. Stop trying to make people think differently. The Mother is responsible. Evidence doesn’t lie!!!!!

  106. Deanna Koch says:

    Omg. Words can’t even describe how awful this is.

  107. Sean Lee Reilly says:

    Why, instead of trying to fix the power again, would she randomly decide to go out and wash her car at 10pm? She just left her twins inside a powerless house that, because it was late at night, would be completely covered in darkness? Also, why the hell would you decide to wash your car at night? It would be too dark to see any form of dirt on the car.

    No doubt that the mother played a sinister part in the death of this little boy.

  108. Jane says:

    Omg.. How sad. This case needs REOPENED! Left her kids alone in a dark/cold house (it was March) to go outside to work on her car? YEAH RIGHT! With all the testings that can be done now, let’s pray that someone reopens this case & brings justice to the little Angel who died at the hands of a killer before it happens again.

    • Penny says:

      That’s right before it happens again. If you can kill your own innocent child you could kill anyone or anything.

  109. Jen says:

    If there was no smell of smoke on the surviving twin then he was NOT in the house. How sad the little boy died at the hands of a very messed up mother. She should not only be put on the child abuse registry but charged with murder.

  110. becky says:

    no words to describe this! how sad. :( the mother is listed on the child abuse registry…why was she allowed to have these precious children in her care in the first place..esp. unsupervised?! our justice system needs some major changes! if the courts would protect children from monsters like her the first time…this poor baby would still be alive!

  111. m says:

    Its obvious that the mother did this if he was in a closed room and the fire started there. She had time to go to the top of stairs and grab one twin but couldnt here the other twin give me a break! Shes on the child abuse registry also. This poor kid didnt get any justice just because this monster mother father is a county attorney! Shame on the system! Give this child justice! Im sure if she was tried she would be found guilty in a heartbeat!

    • Jackie D says:

      I can only assume the mother is guilty. It doesn’t make sense to go out and clean out your car at 10pm at night. It doesn’t make sense she didn’t feel like checking the circuit breaker again or fuses.
      Any containers around with finger prints? Did her clothes have flammable liquid spilt on them?
      I hope the worse life is ahead for her if she is the guilty one. Who else would do it? Esp if there is a record of abuse already?

      • Judy says:

        Lies. No record of abuse for mother.

        • L says:

          BS, She was on the child abuse registry

        • Robin says:

          Judy, this is for you. This is just one of the confirmed reports of abuse.

          Written by Connie Kincaid, Child Protection worker for Union County on 01/29/2001

          DETERMINATION AS TO WHETHER ABUSE DID OR DID NOT OCCUR: (If registry placement is made, list all factors necessary for this decision, using the Child Protective Handbook.)

          Based on the following factors, Denial of Critical Care: Failure to Provide Proper Supervision is founded by a preponderance of evidence. The report is confirmed and is being placed on the Registry.

          FACTOR 1: Reginald Louis Morehouse, DOB 01/23/1999 and Ricky Neal Morehouse, DOB 01/29/1999, are children.

          FACTOR 2: Rachel Page is their mother and primary caretaker

          FACTOR 3: The children have been endangered by the acts or
          omission of the caretaker. The caretaker has failed to provide proper supervision necessary for the children’s health and welfare which a reasonable and prudent person would exercise under similar facts and circumstances. A reasonable and prudent person would not leave two children under the age of two home alone even if she was only going next door to use the phone. I had been at the home for a while before she showed up. I arrived in a vehicle. She did not know I was there or I feel she would have been home sooner. When we did go inside there were sharp knives on the floor. Rachel admitted she knew they were on the floor. One of the children also had a seashell from a necklace in his mouth. His mom said the jewelry was where she did not think they could get it.

          FACTOR 4: The caretaker was financially able to provide for the child’s critical needs.

          The above factors enlarged upon in the Summary of Contacts fully support a conclusion of founded Denial of Critical Care: Failure to Provide Proper Supervision.


          The report is confirmed for Denial of Critical Care: Failure to Provide Proper Supervision. Rachel did leave her children home alone. They were there long enough to get into her jewelry that she had put away. There were sharp kitchen knives on the floor. She knew they were on the floor before she left the children alone.

          The children were clearly not adequately supervised. Nothing happened to the children. One of them did have a piece of seashell in his mouth from a necklace. The other children picked up one of the sharp knives while I was there. When his mom told him to put it down he took off running. The children are without a doubt too young to be left unsupervised. These children were not only not supervised in the home they were left in the home alone without anyone even able to hear them if there were a problem. The car or the dog were not heard next door.

          Although the children were okay on this occasion the potential for harm was a high risk. There are two small children and it was cold outside. Although Rachel said she would not leave them alone to go next door again it would take longer to get the children ready to go outside than it would to just go. The children were not dressed yet when I was there. One of them had a diaper on. The other one had a sleeper and a dirty diaper that had been wet through the sleeper. Rachel does not have a phone. She is allowed to use the neighbor’s phone. Rachel did not indicate this was an isolated incident. Her comment was, “I only ran next door to use the phone.” She said she would not do it again. I am not sure that she understood the risk that she had put her children in by leaving them alone. Rachel was willing to accept services to help her understand what puts these children at risk and what she can do to reduce the risks to them.

          The criteria of minor, isolated, and unlikely to reoccur have not been met. It is not believed that this was an isolated incident and it is believed that there is a risk it will reoccur. Therefore, the report is confirmed and is placed on the Registry as a founded report.

    • Anonymous says:

      With the evidence we do have, a lot of which seems to implicate the mother, we cannot simply dismiss her as the culprit because some people know her to be a good person. Remember Ted Bundy had friends and “The Stranger Beside Me” may be a good read. I cannot speak on her mental health but it is possible that she was suffering from something that altered her state of mind to a point where she could justify what she was doing or didn’t even know she was doing it. We cannot speak to the operation of her mind and whether her displayed grief is for her son’s death or for the [alleged] thought of her causing it. Although one cannot say how they will react to a traumatic situation, I do know that as a mother myself I would have to be dead or very near it to leave the house without my other child. The circumstances are strange to put it in the nicest way possible and does not mimic a normal routine for a mother with two small children. Getting information on this case should not be as difficult as this one is leading me to believe people’s assumptions of connections with authority are correct or lazy case work but we do also have to keep in mind that sometimes people do try their best to solve crimes and it eats at them but they are faced with impossible obstacles. Whether I believe she is responsible or not (I do), one thing is for certain and that is that Robin is a rockstar. This woman will NEVER let him be forgotten and will NOT rest until justice is served. I have no personal connection to anyone in this case, so my comment means just as little as anyone else’s and although I do have personal opinions on the case that I have shared I do not want to take the focus away from the real victim. There is power in numbers so please help find justice for Ricky.

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