Rhoden Murder Suspect Enters Not Guilty Plea, Held Without Bond

The first of four family members in Ohio arrested in connection with one of the most brutal crimes to ever take place in the state is being arraigned today.  

Edward "Jake" Wagner pleaded not guilty to charges of aggravated murder and other counts in the Pike County Court.  

Members of the Wagner family were charged for the execution-style killings of eight members of the Rhoden family back in 2016. The Rhoden family, which includes seven adults and one teen, were shot and killed in 2016, a brutal crime that came to be known as the "Pike County Massacre."  

The murders are believed to be related to a custody battle the Wagner family had with the Rhoden family. 

Arraignments are scheduled for 27-year-old George Wagner tomorrow, 48-year-old Angela Wagner on Thursday, and 47-year-old George "Billy" Wagner next Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Columbus based defense lawyers representing the four are considering asking the court to move the trial out of Pike County. Attorney Mark Collins said yesterday it will be hard to find an impartial jury in Pike County due to the constant media coverage the case has received there over the past two years. Under Ohio law, there must be an attempt to seat a jury in the county of jurisdiction before the court can move the trial.

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