GUILTY OH Pike Co., 8 in Rhoden Family Murdered Over Custody Issue, 4 Members Wagner Family Arrested #63

Discussion in 'Trials' started by tlcya, Jul 29, 2017.

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  1. Covert Operative

    Covert Operative Well-Known Member

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    I think other scenarios could be that JW said things in his confession that may help one of the defendants. I would not say they may be true but the state may not be able to prove those specific things are not true. It could lead to a hung jury or a plea deal if that were to be the case. I do not see anyone being acquitted as you keep saying.
     


  2. Berrybell

    Berrybell Well-Known Member

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    I think that is what we have been doing with what evidence we have so far, some have been speculating what strategy the defense might use, how the jury could perceive the evidence/lack of, and/or JWs testimony. I have not read where anyone said they thought any of the 3 could be acquitted only that there is always the possibility of the a sentence lighter than LWOP. I don't think it is unreasonable to discuss the potential of various outcomes.
     
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  3. Betty P

    Betty P Well-Known Member

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    IMO, based on living in Ohio for decades, if the trials result in a hung jury, it's a very strong bet it will be the same as an acquittal.

    It will likely result in the 4 defendants being released from incarceration

    The Ohio General Assembly will not allocate an extra $1 million needed to help Pike County pay for more trials

    The defense attorneys know this, it's part of their strategy
    The Ohio AG even passed the case along to Pike County because he didn't want to spend the money and manpower needed for 4 cases.

    The Ohio General Assembly has a power structure that's locked in place for decades to come. Gov. DeWine had to work hard with them to get funding for these trials. They originally gave Pike County a $100,000 "down payment" to cover the pre-trial, discovery, etc. cost. Most of the Ohio General Assembly doesn't care whether or not anyone is convicted for the Rhoden murders. JMO

    It's estimated the cost to try all 4 will exceed $1 million.

    The headlines on this article are a little deceptive. Ohio's AG had only met with state legislators, but hadn't gotten a commitment from them to allocate the rest. He later withdrew from handling the case due to the cost, even though he had promised to help get the money.

    Pike County massacre: State leaders give $100K toward prosecutions

    https://www.daytondailynews.com/new...e-county-murder-costs/BcKHikwl9zPGeFghq2sLaL/

    Pike County massacre: State leaders give $100K toward prosecutions

    More recent articles claim the state recently has approved funding for the rest of the trials. It took them 2 years to finally fund the trials.

    https://www.wsaz.com/2021/04/22/suspect-in-rhoden-murders-changes-plea-from-not-guilty-to-guilty/

    JMO, the defense is banking on them not coughing up another $1 + million if there's a mistrial. By then, they might assume there would no longer be negative repercussions for letting the Wagners remain free.

    ALL JMO

    So how do we prevent this from happening?
     
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  4. Dudly

    Dudly Well-Known Member

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    One thing that would help fund this case is keeping it in the news. Don’t let it get forgotten by the masses. Contact radio, TV stations and Pod Cast people and ask them questions about the case to let them know people care about the outcome.
     
  5. Betty P

    Betty P Well-Known Member

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    Agree. The best way is to make sure the defense teams don't get away with tricks to get a mistrial declared. Try to stop the defense teams from planting that idea in the minds of the potential jury pool.

    ETA: Frankly, I can't think of any realistic way the defense could be successful at getting a mistrial declared. The state and judge have been very careful.

    What does everyone else think?
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2021
  6. Covert Operative

    Covert Operative Well-Known Member

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    The prosecution can retry, reach a plea or dismiss a case. I could not see a dismissal on a murder of 8 people by the state. As I stated before many times I could see a plea deal in the case of a hung jury or before if they could reach some agreement for all the reasons you mention in your post.

    I do not believe JW will be walking anywhere since he has locked in his fate already and probably the fate of the other 3 in the manner of LWOP or some other sentence.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 22, 2021
  7. Covert Operative

    Covert Operative Well-Known Member

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    Have never had a reason yet to believe they would get a mistrial declared due to any misconduct if that is what you mean.---A mistrial is a trial that's not completed, it's instead halted and declared invalid, typically before a verdict can be reached.

    The judge could declare a mistrial if there is a hung jury, could not see that happening where 8 people have been murdered, however you say in Ohio that is what usually happens.
     
  8. Betty P

    Betty P Well-Known Member

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    My apologies for any misunderstanding. No, I don't think mistrials are commonplace in Ohio. Juries here actually end up sending a lot of people to death row. For the record, I oppose the DP, too.

    That's not to say there aren't pockets of corruption in Ohio, but that system seems to work through not bringing charges against criminals.

    Here's a recent case, though, where a judge declared a mistrial because someone slipped documents the jury wasn't supposed to see into their information packets. Clever trick by some defense attorneys, but this is very rare.

    Judge in Cleveland declares mistrial in murder trial of Simone Biles’ brother after jury mistakenly gets legal briefs

    Judge Synenberg is problematic to say the least, but I don't see that happening with Judge Deering. I hope AC and Junk are paying attention to the paperwork.
     
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  9. Cool Cats

    Cool Cats Well-Known Member

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    One way to keep a mistrial from happening is to have enough alternate jurors.

    There are a boat load of reasons why a juror could be dismissed before the end of a trial so it will be critical for Judge Deering to get enough alternate jurors to sit in on the trial.

    In an Ohio case the judge dismissed the alternate jurors at the beginning of trial so when one of the 12 jurors couldn't continue due to a death in her family there were no alternatives to take her place.

    Result was a mistrial. Judge declares mistrial in Ohio twin killing case

    In Columbus Ohio, March 19 2009,
    A judge declared a mistrial in the case of Derris Lewis after a juror said she couldn't continue because of the death of her sister-in-law. That left only 11 available jurors, since alternate jurors were dismissed before deliberatio
    s crucial.

    www.lawyers.com/legal-info/criminal/criminal-law-basics/excluding-jurors-removin…

    When a Mistrial is Required After Juror Removal

    After removing a juror, the judge may grant a motion for mistrial. However, judges are generally loathe to declare a mistrial, which stops the trial without a verdict and may lead to the prosecutor to seek a new trial. Still, if no alternate jurors are available and continuing with a smaller jury isn’t a legal option, the judge must declare a mistrial.
    • May 11, 2021 · The court may direct that no more than four jurors in addition to the regular jury be called and impaneled to sit as alternate jurors.
      Alternate jurors in the order in which they are called shall replace jurors who, prior to the time the jury retires to consider its verdict, become or are found to be unable or disqualified to perform …
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2021
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  10. Cool Cats

    Cool Cats Well-Known Member

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    Why Jurors May Be Removed During Trial

    Reasons Jurors Are Disqualified After Trial Starts

    At any point after a criminal trial starts, a judge must remove any juror when it becomes clear that the person is disqualified for any of the “for cause” reasons for disqualifying potential jurors, including:
    • bias for or against the defendant
    • contact with the defendant, or
    • refusal or inability to follow the law.
    • jurors only realize during the trial or jury deliberations that they have strong feelings or preconceived opinions that make it impossible to be fair.
    • jurors may not have given honest answers during voir dire.
    Judges may also disqualify jurors for misconduct or other actions that impair their ability to perform their duty. Examples of conduct that could interfere with the defendant’s right to a fair trial include:
    • Inattention or sleeping
    • Disobeying court instructions
    • Absence from the courtroom.
    • Refusal to deliberate.
     
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  11. Betty P

    Betty P Well-Known Member

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    Wow, that's terrible. How do these judges get away with this stuff. But, yeah, it's Ohio, so anything can happen.

    And if they can't find enough alternate jurors, they should consider bringing in jurors from another county or have the case moved elsewhere. I'd like to see them do that anyway. <modsnip>

    In historical context, I have a distant ancestor who was once accused and tried for murder. He was convicted and sentenced to hang. The governor pardoned him years later because of a lack of evidence, but also because the judge had allowed the prosecuting attorney to appoint jury members from a list of his friends and neighbors. During voire dire, one of the potential jurors stated he didn't think he could be objective, that he thought the defendant was guilty. They seated him anyway. So, yeah, things are better than in the old days, but not perfect.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 22, 2021
  12. Cool Cats

    Cool Cats Well-Known Member

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    Ohio allows 4 alternate jurors so I think that is how many will be available in George's and/or the other Wagner trials.

    Juror Social Media Misconduct Can Lead To Mistrials

    In a capital murder conviction,
    the Arkansas Supreme Court ordered a new trial after a juror repeatedly tweeted comments during trial and in deliberations.

    The trial court found the defendant did not suffer any prejudice by the juror’s actions, but the state Supreme Court overruled the lower court stating the juror’s tweets constituted public discussion of the case.

    Several jurors in Baltimore, (Maryland) became Facebook “friends” during a prominent trial and electronically exchanged information and commentary with each other about the case. They also asked outsiders to give an online opinion of what the verdict should be.

    In Michigan, a juror posted a Facebook message stating how excited she was to report to jury duty and the next day to let the defendant know he/she had been found guilty.

    A male juror in Florida “friended” a female defendant while serving on her jury. He was dismissed from the jury when the defendant reported the action to her lawyer.

    A Texas man serving on a jury “friended” the plaintiff in a personal injury case and wound up sentenced to two days of community service.
     
  13. ohioexpat63

    ohioexpat63 Well-Known Member

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    IMO, it isn't so much as what Jake said in his plea as much as it's about the hard physical evidence he produced, the alleged weapons and vehicles used in this case. OJ and Casey didn't have this sort of evidence, to where a partner pleas guilty and produces hard evidence.

    Anything is possible. Jake can possibly lessen the roles others played in the murders but if the evidence LE has doesn't corroborate it then I wouldn't trust anything he says.

    We don't know the completeness of the evidence in the state's hand. We do know it is so significant Jake pleads guilty to save his bacon from decades of sitting on death row.

    My opinions are never meant to demean or belittle another's. It's only written to show how I see the world.
     
  14. Betty P

    Betty P Well-Known Member

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    These are all good points and I agree with all of your post.

    The fact that two defendants so far, Rita Newcom and Jake Wagner have fully confessed to all the charges against them indicates the state was even handed and accurate in the charges they filed against the defendants.

    While we haven't heard all the details of the evidence, it's clear thus far what the prosecution has backs up the charges they made. That includes solid evidence about which weapons were used, who pulled the triggers and who was at the crime scenes.

    The reason Rita and Jake took plea deals was because they had no alibis or exculpatory evidence to offer on their own behalf. The prosecution didn't charge them with all the counts in their indictments to intimidate them, they did so because they had the evidence to prove it before a jury.

    As many pointed out here, Jakes decision came after he and his attorneys saw and heard all the evidence against him. They realized Jake had no defense. He did it.

    JMO, the same applies to the other 3 Wagners. This is a high stakes case and the prosecution didn't charge the other 3 Wagners with murder just to scare them or on a gamble. They did it because they knew that's what the evidence showed.

    When they were out there in those gruesome crime scenes, they saw footprints, blood spatter, spent cartridges and other evidence that revealed how many people were there, how they got in and what they did. Game cameras and other video evidence revealed which vehicles and which people were in and about those crime scenes.

    When they listened to the many hours of audio and video evidence and sorted through the thousands of texts, emails, etc. they knew who was involved in the planning, execution and cover up of the murders.

    JMO, they weren't taking risks on these cases. Jake took a plea deal because he had to. The others should consider the same.

    BTW, I'm considering updating the timeline to add more key elements from the pretrial hearings. If anyone wants to help, let me know.
     
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  15. Cool Cats

    Cool Cats Well-Known Member

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    "If anyone wants to help, let me know."

    Do you mean just recent pretrial hearings? Like 2021?

    What exactly from those hearings would you put in the timeline?

    I can help if you need posters to go over certain hearings, just need to know which hearings and what information to look for.

    Thanks
     
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  16. Covert Operative

    Covert Operative Well-Known Member

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    Do you think all of their pleas will be the same as JW?
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2021
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  17. ohioexpat63

    ohioexpat63 Well-Known Member

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    I don't think they will. They have nothing to lose going to trial
     
  18. Betty P

    Betty P Well-Known Member

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    I'm looking at doing a quick summary of them, mostly the relevant parts where something important happened or something new revealed. I'd like to avoid the ones where the attorneys were just arguing for more time, etc. People can see that stuff online.

    As with the original timeline, each item has to have a link to a Websleuths approved source.

    I've been thinking of updating it for a while. I've actually added some key things to the copy I have on my computer. I was noticing some mistakes and omissions in things being reported and written about online.

    For instance, I'm pretty sure when Rita Newcomb entered her plea agreement with the court, the judge also said she would assist the prosecution, but she wouldn't have to testify in any trials. For some reason, this wasn't reported in the news media, but it really should be included. It shows the court and prosecution have always been considerate about the difficulty of making close family members testify against each other in this case.
     
  19. Covert Operative

    Covert Operative Well-Known Member

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    I agree, must be some reason one or more are going to trial if they do. Before trials there may be an agreement.
     
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  20. ohioexpat63

    ohioexpat63 Well-Known Member

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    They are no longer facing the DP. They go to trial and they retain the right to appeal convictions. Jmo

    They all could plea for all I know.

    I will say this, if I was guessing. I'd think AW would plead guilty before BW and GW. She seemed less defiant at her last hearing. Imo
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2021
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