Tahlequah Daily Press

January 15, 2013

Accused molester to be extradited

By JOSH NEWTON
Staff Writer

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. — A Cherokee County man decided Monday not to fight his extradition from Florida back to Tahlequah, where he faces several charges of lewd molestation of a child.

Roxie Lee Wagers, 71, waived extradition in Broward County, Fla., where he has been jailed since his arrest by U.S. marshals last Tuesday.

Wagers became the focus of a national search after he skipped town last year, allegedly to avoid prosecution for 10 felony molestation charges.

While in Florida, Wagers allegedly purchased airline tickets to Bogota, Colombia, but didn’t take the flight.

Investigators used several sources of information to learn Wagers was in the Fort Lauderdale area and might be trying to flee the country to several possible locations.

Authorities say Wagers sexually abused several underage girls over a number of years. Formal charges include nine felony counts of lewd molestation and one count of attempted solicitation of a minor for indecent exposure.

Those charges are based on the alleged abuse of one girl, who was 9 when the first incident occurred in 2006. Investigators last week said there could be two or three other victims.

Wagers allegedly made a taped confession to one victim’s father, and offered to pay the family $17,000 to keep the allegations hidden.

Wagers left Cherokee County sometime last year, before warrants were issued for his arrest.

The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office will be escorting Wagers back to Tahlequah from Florida.

Tahlequah Chief of Police Clay Mahaney said on Monday evening that he had not discussed with the sheriff’s office whether Detective Thomas Donnell, who investigated the molestation case, will also be traveling to Florida as part of that team.