George Wagner IV denies knowledge of the plot to kill 8 Rhoden family members in 2016

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WAVERLY, Ohio (AP) — A man on trial in the 2016 slayings of eight current and prospective members of another family in southern Ohio has testified that he had no idea his own relatives planned to kill the victims and that he would have taken action to prevent the slayings had he known about such a plan.

Thirty-one-year-old George Wagner IV took the stand Wednesday in Pike County and denied any knowledge of his family’s involvement in the slayings, which is said he learned about from TV reports.

He said had he known, he “would have never let it happen.”

His brother and mother have pleaded guilty to involvement in the case and his father is awaiting trial.