Prosecutor: Keep rapist jailed for life

WARREN – After pointing out that William Wayne Fisher Jr. has raped young girls over a span of three decades, Trumbull County Prosecutor Dennis Watkins said last week that the only reason the aging sex offender has not raped anyone lately is because he has been behind bars for 18 years.

”(Fisher) is a multi-generational sexual predator whose middle name should be ‘recidivist’ with a capital R. This man deserves to die in prison,” the prosecutor wrote in a recent letter to Ohio Parole Board members.

Watkins’ letter makes it clear he opposes any release for the 64-year-old Fisher, who is in North Central Correctional Institution and is scheduled for a parole hearing in October.

In June of 1995, Fisher was sentenced to four concurrent life terms in prison by Trumbull County Common Pleas Judge W. Wyatt McKay.

Fisher, who was 45 years old at the time, showed no emotion during the sentencing, but then assistant county prosecutor Carol Sopkovich confirmed that at one point, Fisher had requested he be castrated.

Fisher, described by police and his victims as the guy with the big nose and one eye, was handed one of the life sentences and other concurrent sentences for attacks on his victims in 1987, when he fled the area after being indicted.

Three other life sentences in a 1995 case were run concurrently with charges of forgery and tampering with records since he used a fake Social Security number to get drivers licenses using aliases.

Gary Hetzel, an investigator for Watkins, found that in 1978 Fisher forced his 4-year-old daughter to perform oral sex on him and he was caught in the act by his wife. Charged with rape, Fisher pleaded guilty to gross sexual imposition and served three months in prison.

In 1987, his daughter was victimized again and another relative was attacked when the family lived on Homewood Avenue S.E. and Fisher worked as a truck driver.

Trumbull County authorities knew in November 1994 of the alleged sexual abuse suffered by two other young girls, but didn’t know the real name of the alleged rapist until Fisher made a brief appearance in Howland.

Fisher fled from that 1987 indictment and the newer allegations stemmed from his time on the run. The more recent charges involved two girls in the summer of 1993 who were 9 and 5 years old at the time.

Prosecutors said the girls were placed in a foster home when the abuse was discovered. The complaints were originally filed in the name of Fisher’s alias, James Watters.

Fisher was arrested Feb. 14, 1995 in Hilton Head, S.C., but made a brief appearance in Howland Jan. 28 of that year when he presented a false driver’s license with the Watters alias, and fled.

Authorities learned the man’s real name was Fisher when they compared the photo on the phony license to a photo on file with Warren police.

During his time on the run Fisher befriended a local family on Oak St. S.W. and was eventually charged with sex with an underage girl.

Prosecutors said the victim’s mother watched while her husband and Fisher had sex with the 9-year-old girl.

The girl’s father was also convicted and later died in prison.