On April 22nd of this year, 2016, eight dead bodies were found in Pike County, Ohio. Six adults and a sixteen year old boy were all found murdered. Worse yet, as if that’s not bad enough, they were all members of the Rhoden family.
Christopher Rhoden Sr., 40, was shot multiple times in the head, torso and limbs. Kenneth Rhoden, who was found eight miles away in his camper, was shot only once, execution style, in the head. Hanna Rhoden, Dana (Manley) Rhoden, Clarence (known as Frankie) Rhoden, Christopher Rhoden Jr., Gary Rhoden and Hannah Gilley were all shot multiple times in the head.
Bruising and lacerations on several of the victims indicates that they were beaten either before, or after, they were shot. A few were murdered while still in their beds.
The first two bodies (Christopher and Gary) were discovered at about 7:45 am. Dana Rhoden’s sister, Bobby Jo Manley, had arrived at the property to take care of some animals. She let herself into the house and it was then that she saw the bodies on the floor. She immediately fled the scene and called 911. Through breathless pleading, she begged authorities to come quickly. She explained that there was blood all over the place and she was sure both of the men were dead.
WHAT HAPPENED AT THE RHODEN FARM
The authorities arrived within minutes and, over the next few hours, the discovery of 8 bodies had been made. But they also discovered three small children. All alive and well. One of the children, just 4 days old, was discovered laying on a bed with the lifeless body of her mother. A 6 month old and a three year old were also found. They too were left unharmed.
Officials looked first to determine if the incident might not be a murder – suicide scenario. This idea, however, was almost immediately dismissed, due to the fact that none of the victims fit a suicide kill. Officers then needed to decide if the crime had been carried out by more than one person. Because two of the four crime scenes were within walking distance of each other, and the third, being a mile away, the fourth nearly eight miles, gave way to believe that more than one perpetrator was feasible.
Whether or not there were one, two or more people who had committed this unspeakable atrocity, one thing was certain. This execution style mass murder had been premeditated and carried out with a certain amount professionalism, as the assailant(s) had taken time and care to cover their tracks quite well.
WHAT SECRETS DID THE RHODENS HAVE AND DID THEY LEAD TO MASS EXECUTION
Three days after the discovery of the massacred family, on April 25, it was revealed that marijuana had been found growing abundantly on three of the four properties that comprised the Rhoden’s farm, including an indoor green house that held several hundred marijuana plants. It is believed that the crop of illegal vegetation was being grown for sale and not just for personal use.
Another strange discovery was the abundance of caged chickens and equipment used for breeding the animal for the illegal sport of cockfighting.
The next day, on April 26, Dana Rhoden’s father verbally made an observation, stating that he felt that the dead victims must have known their assailants due to the presence of his daughter’s two large and very protective dogs. No harm had not come to the dogs nor did there appear to be any signs of forced entry at any one of the crime scenes.
To date, no one has been connected with the Pike massacre and the investigation continues.
The 911 call can be heard on the utube video below.