MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

January 24, 2013

Sex crimes suspect returned to state

Tahlequah man had been caught in Florida

By Dylan Goforth
Phoenix Staff Writer

— A Tahlequah man was ordered held without bond Wednesday after he was jailed upon his extradition from Florida.

Roxie Lee Wagers, 71, had been at the center of a manhunt after he was charged in December with nine counts of lewd molestation and one count of attempted solicitation of minor for indecent exposure.

Tahlequah law enforcers asked for the public’s help in December after rumors spread that Wagers had fled the area, and possibly the country.

A Cherokee County judge ordered Wagers’ bank accounts frozen in early January after authorities discovered Wagers was likely living in the Hollywood, Fla., area. He had allegedly purchased a plane ticket to Bogota, Colombia, but missed his flight.

Had Wagers made it to Colombia, authorities said they likely wouldn’t have been able to bring him back to the United States.

Instead, days after the flight, Wagers was arrested in Florida by U.S. marshals. He announced Jan. 14 he would not fight extradition to Oklahoma.

“In this case, he honored the warrant we had for him,” Cherokee County Undersheriff Jason Chennault said. “If he hadn’t waived it, we would have issued a governor’s warrant for him.”

Wagers was ordered held without bond Wednesday after he was booked into the Cherokee County Detention Center shortly after midnight. He’s set to appear in court at 9 a.m. Feb. 13 for a sounding docket to set a date for his preliminary hearing.

Court documents in the case allege Wagers molested a young girl multiple times between 2006 and 2012. Wagers is accused of touching the juvenile inappropriately, as well as making her watch him as he touched himself.   

Wagers also is accused of offering the father of one of the girls he allegedly molested $17,000 if they wouldn’t go to authorities.  

Reach Dylan Goforth at (918) 684-2903 or dgoforth@muskogeephoenix.com.