George Wagner IV: GUILTY

Photo: Pike County Sheriff mugshot

( Waverly, Ohio ) - After two-and-a-half months of testimony, it only took the jury in Pike County just a few hours to convict George Wagner IV in one of the most notorious murder trials in Ohio history.

The jury started deliberating just Wednesday morning in the Rhoden family mass killing from 2016.

Eight members of that family were all found fatally shot in multiple locations the morning of April 22. It was in 2018 when then-Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced that four members of the Wagner family--Billy Wagner, his wife Angela, and their sons Jake and George IV--had been arrested and charged with multiple counts of aggravated murder, conspiracy, and more. On the five year anniversary of the killings, Jake Wagner pleaded guilty and agreed to testify for the prosecution. Five months later, his mother, Angela, did the same. In exchange for their testimony, Jake and Angela wanted the death penalty taken off the table for Billy and George IV.

On Wednesday afternoon, the jury in Pike County came back with guilty verdicts on all 22 counts against George Wagner IV, including aggravated murder. George sat stoically as the verdicts were read.

The judge called for a sentencing hearing to begin December 14.

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