Pike County murders: Charges dropped against Fredericka Wagner

WAVERLY — UPDATE @ 3:10 p.m.:

Charges of perjury and obstruction were dropped against Fredericka Wagner in Pike County court this afternoon during her final pre-trial hearing, according to our partners at WCPO.

RELATED: Timeline: The shocking events of the Pike County massacre


One of the women accused of helping cover up the Pike County murders is scheduled to appear in court today for a hearing.

Fredericka Wagner, 76, is facing a count of obstructing justice and a count of perjury in the Rhoden family murders.

Wagner is the mother of George “Billy” Wagner III. Billy, his wife, Angela Wagner, and their sons, George Wagner IV and Edward “Jake” Wagner, are accused of the execution-style killings of eight members of a Pike County family in 2016.

Rita Jo Newcomb, the mother of Angela Wagner, is also facing perjury, obstruction of justice charges, and forgery charges in the alleged cover-up.

The apparent motive for the killings was a custody battle, according to officials, as Jake Wagner has a 2-year-old daughter with one of the victims.

RELATED: Trial date set for grandmother accused of Pike County murder cover-up

Wagner has pleaded not guilty to the obstruction and perjury charges.

At her previous pretrial hearing in March, Wagner’s attorney asked the judge to dismiss all charges her. The motion to dismiss was denied.

While in court for a January appearance, it was revealed that Wagner was accused of lying about bulletproof vests that were seized during a search of her property.

A judge issued a non-contact order forbidding Wagner from communicating with Rita Jo Newcomb or any of the four members of the Wagner family.

Both women were placed on house arrest, though Wagner’s request to modify the conditions of her house arrest was granted.

Wagner’s trial is set to begin on July 29.

We will update this story with any new details that emerge from today’s hearing.


>> Death penalty possible for 4 of 6 arrested in Rhoden slayings

>> Ohio AG DeWine lays out charges in 2016 Rhoden family killings

>> Who are the Wagners? Pike County murder investigators want to know

>> Attorney General: A ‘picture emerged’ as Pike County murder investigation progressed