Why does Colter think Russell killed their father on Tracker?

This week's Tracker has Jensen Ackles playing Colter's brother but why is Colter convinced the guy killed their dad?
Justin Hartley as Colter Shaw, from the CBS original pilot TRACKER. -- Photo: Lindsay Siu/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Justin Hartley as Colter Shaw, from the CBS original pilot TRACKER. -- Photo: Lindsay Siu/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

Tracker is set to have a big guest star turn as Jensen Ackles will play Russell, Colter Shaw’s estranged brother. Their partnership may be tense because Colter thinks Russell killed their father, but is that really the case?

From the start of the new CBS hit Tracker, Colter Shaw has been driven by the mystery surrounding his father, Ashton. He always thought his dad was a mild-mannered college professor who suddenly dropped the family off the grid and started teaching his kids survival techniques.

The story built to the reveal that Ashton had been lost in the forest during a storm. He'd wanted the kids to flee, but his daughter Dory refused. Colter and his brother Russell argued about it, with Russell saying they were better off without a dad seemingly losing his mind. Colter searched for his dad, finding him lying dead at the bottom of a cliff with Russell standing at the top of it. 

Thus, the idea that Russell killed their dad was obvious even though it was ruled accidental and Russell immediately fled. In the present day, Russell was trying to call Colter with their mother, Mary, telling him not to answer. Someone then broke into the house to look at Ashton’s journals with a note that read “I’m watching you.” Mary was very evasive about what happened to Ashton, making Colter suspicious.

The last episode, "Beyond the Campus Walls," had Colter reuniting with his sister, Dory (Melissa Roxburgh), who was a professor and avoided questions about their parents. This led to Colter and Russell finally reconnecting after all these years. So this reunion will be rough, but Colter might have answers at last to this long-running mystery.

Tracker episode 12 may reveal whether Russell killed Ashton

In “Off the Books,” Russell hires Colter to help track down an army buddy who’s gone missing. This leads them into some sort of conspiracy that may be tied into their father.

Obviously, the issue of their dad's death is going to come up and the question is if Russell really did kill him. And if he didn’t, why would he run off and not come back to Colter in all these years? Colter may be doubting his brother’s guilt with all he’s seen and the realization his dad was keeping a lot of secrets.

It's likely Russell is hiding something from his brother and there's more to this case then there seems. It will be hard for Colter to cut through the lies, and he may be unsure if he can truly trust Russell or not. It may well be Russell is going to put Colter in a very dangerous spot.

However it happens, this should be a big episode with the Shaws working together and perhaps it will answer a lot of questions for Colter about the past and what truly happened to his dad.

Tracker airs Sundays at 9/8c on CBS.