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Pike County Murders: George Wagner IV gets life without parole for 2016 killings

WHIO Dayton 12/20/2022 WHIO Staff

George Wagner IV has learned his sentence for his November conviction at the Pike County courthouse in Waverly.

News Center 7 was in court Monday when George Wagner IV was sentenced to life in prison without parole for all eight counts of aggravated murder he was convicted of.

Last month a jury in Pike County convicted Wagner on 22 counts, including multiple counts of aggravated murder, for his role in the murder of eight members of the Rhoden and Gilley families.

>>’Good won today and evil lost,’ Pike County prosecutor says of outcome in George Wagner IV’s trial

George was also sentenced to eight years each for one count of conspiracy, four counts aggravated burglary and one count of engaging in pattern of corrupt activity; 10 months each for one count of unlawful possession of dangerous ordinance, one count of forgery, one count of unauthorized use of property and one count of obstruction of justice; 24 months each for three counts of tampering with evidence; and 12 months for one count of interception of electronic, wire or oral communication.

Additionally, he was sentenced to 81 years in prison for firearm specifications on charges. In total, he will serve eight consecutive terms of life in prison without parole, plus 121 years.

He and his brother, Jake Wagner; mother, Angela Wagner; and father, George “Billy” Wagner, have all been accused of the murders. In April 2021, Jake pleaded guilty to eight counts of aggravated murder and a list of other charges for his role. Five months later, Angela Wagner pleaded guilty to her role in the killings.

During the sentencing hearing, Wagner’s attorneys presented a motion for a new trial. That motion was denied by Judge Randy Deering.

Family members of the victims addressed the court ahead of George’s sentencing.

Hannah Gilley was one of the eight people killed in the 2016 killings. Gilley’s mother gave an emotional statement addressed at George, calling him and his family “evil.”

“Devils hunt at night, just like you George Wagner IV and your evil family did,” Gilley’s mother said.

As part of Jake and Angela’s plea deals, their testimony in George’s trial resulted in the death penalty being taken off the table, News Center 7 previously reported. Billy Wagner is still awaiting trial.

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