Ten months ago, Ashley "Ash" Rowell, a 35-year-old father of three, and a beloved figure in Houston's craft beer community, was gunned down in his Montrose home. Police said Ash knew his killer.
Ash's mother, Charlotte, agreed with the police. In fact, she believes she knows who's behind the killing, and she can't believe there hasn't been an arrest. Several years earlier, according to Charlotte, Ash's brothers-in-law threatened not only Ash's life, but hers as well. Friends told The Houston Press that Ash talked to them about these threats as well -- and he took them seriously.
For an unsolved homicide case approaching its year anniversary, police are being remarkably tight-lipped. They would not comment for this story, nor will they release the Harris County Medical Examiner's report.
But they aren't the only ones being silent: Ash's widow, Lesli, did not want to talk about her late husband, nor did her two brothers who have been accused of threatening her husband's life. A third brother -- a Houston police officer -- also did not reply to repeated requests for comment.
Charlotte was at first reluctant to talk to reporters -- but after so much time, she's afraid that, without raising attention, the investigation may just peter out. She's hired her own private investigator and is doing whatever she can to make sure the people she believes are responsible are brought to justice.
You can read about her efforts, and about her son's life, in this week's cover story, Beer and Blood.