The Cedar County prosecuting attorney’s office has announced staff from Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt’s office soon will be assisting local authorities with investigatory efforts surrounding years of alleged physical, mental and sexual abuse committed by Boyd and Stephanie Householder, owners of the now-closed Circle of Hope Girls Ranch in rural Humansville. 

According to statements from Cedar County prosecuting attorney Ty Gaither, his office recently submitted a request to Governor Mike Parson, requesting additional resources to aid in the investigation of the allegations now making national headlines. 

Based on the Revised Statutes of Missouri, Section 27.030, the governor “may direct the attorney general, or one of the attorney general’s assistants, to aid any prosecuting or circuit attorney in the discharge of their respective duties in the trial courts and in examinations before grand juries, and when so directed by the court, may sign indictments in lieu of the prosecuting attorney” — meaning the governor has the power and obligation to provide resources to a prosecutor’s office based on case load, volume and the severity of certain investigations and criminal acts.

Noting his request for assistance was expeditiously heard and acted upon, Gaither shared his appreciation for the swift action from state-level entities. 

“Quite frankly, the nature of this case requires manpower and additional time this office is not staffed for,” Gaither said. “We are very pleased the governor heard our request and directed the attorney general’s office to assist us. Based on the size and nature of this investigation, it’s both necessary and appreciated as we move forward with this.”

Noteworthy of mention, the added investigatory personnel and legal assistance will be made available to the prosecuting attorney’s office at no added expense to the taxpayers of the county, as well.

Additional information will be made available to our community of readers as this situation continues to develop. 

As of press time Tuesday, Nov. 17, no charges against the Householders or any Circle of Hope Girls Ranch employees have been filed.  

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