CLEMSON – The arrest count in the Howard’s Rock vandalism case is up to three.
North Carolina residents Michael J. Rogers, 46, of Pisgah Forest, and Alden James Gainey, 17, of Brevard have each been arrested, charged with felony counts of conspiracy and obstructing justice.
Michael J. Rogers and Gainey each appeared in Pickens County court Friday. Each was released on personal recognizance bond of $7,500.
Rogers is listed as the president and CEO on the web site of a masonry company in Pisgah Forest, named Michael J. Rogers Masonry, Inc. An employee who answered the phone at the business confirmed Michael is the father of 18-year-old Micah Rogers, who was first arrested in the investigation June 28.
The employee said Michael J. Rogers was not in the office or available for comment.
Micah Rogers was arraigned and released on $5,470 bail June 28 after police located his vehicle, with the assistance of tips and leads stemming from surveillance photos and videos released on June 20.
Rogers was charged with one felony: malicious injury to personal property valued at more than $2,000, but less than $10,000; and one misdemeanor: trespassing and unlawful entry into enclosed places. The felony is punishable by up to five years in prison at the court’s discretion, while the misdemeanor means a $200 fine or 30 days in jail if convicted.
A court date has not been announced for Micah Rogers, whose truck and home were adorned with Clemson paraphernalia – shaking the original perception the vandalism was committed by a fan of a rival school.
Howard’s Rock was damaged June 2, per a police report.
In a Post and Courier online reader survey in June, 57 percent of voters believed a fine and/or community service was sufficient punishment for the younger Rogers. 35 percent thought jail time was necessary, while 8 percent had no strong opinion.
At the announcement of Rogers’ arrest, police said they were searching for at least two other suspects. Six weeks later, they appear to have found their men.
Howard’s Rock has stood on its pedestal above Memorial Stadium for 47 years. One of the most famed traditions in college football, Clemson coaches and players rub the rock before descending The Hill as a pregame ritual.
The university previously stated the tradition would continue with the remaining rock this season, starting Aug. 31 against Georgia.
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