It's been almost a year since Gavin Smith disappeared, and now authorities have made a major break in the case.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department confirms it has reclassified the case of the missing Fox executive as a homicide after locating his black Mercedes 420E in a storage unit in Simi Valley, Calif., last month.
The car was discovered on Feb. 21 and linked to John Creech, a convicted drug dealer currently in custody at Men's Central Jail on an unrelated narcotics charge.
John Creech is the husband of Chandrika Creech, a woman whom two sources confirm to be Smith's former mistress.
The home Creech shares with his wife was searched by police last June in connection with Smith's disappearance. Smith's body has still not been recovered.
Of the latest development, Smith's sister, Tara, tells E! News exclusively, "I need to find out what happened to my brother.
"If the case has changed, then it might bring us some answers. We have to uncover the truth for the sake of Gavin's three sons. They have been waiting a long time to find out what happened to their dad and my brother."
According to our sources, Chandrika and Gavin first met in therapy in 2008 and began an affair, but ceased seeing each other after John Creech learned about the relationship and told his wife to stop. However, a source confirms Chandrika and Gavin renewed contact close to the time he disappeared.
John Creech was arrested last June on drug charges and was remanded to Men's Central Jail in L.A. to await sentencing on a felony charge of selling and transporting drugs.
Sources told E! that John and Chandrika had been separated since before he was locked up and that, though they were still sharing their Canoga Park residence, John was occupying the ground floor and his estranged wife was living upstairs with their kids.
The 57-year-old Smith, who worked in movie distribution for Fox, disappeared on May 1 last year. He was staying at a friend's house at the time and did not tell anyone where he was going.
For the latest developments on this story, watch E! News tonight at 7 p.m. and 11:30 p.m.