Police claim that a suspect pedophile in Phoenix faked his own death to flee the country to avoid prosecution.
Christen Allen Wright, 38, was scheduled to appear at Maricopa County Court this month. This is part of an investigation that began in 2017 and was completed by the El Mirage Police Department. Wright was indicted for various child sex offenses, including felony molestation and felony sexual misconduct with a minor.
However, in the days before his scheduled court appearance on March 20, Wright allegedly concocted an elaborate ruse to fake his death and then flee the state. According to reports, Wright collaborated with an acquaintance who posed as a nurse and called his family to say that Wright, who had driven himself to a nearby hospital, had died. When the family came to the hospital to retrieve Wright’s belongings, including his court-ordered electric monitoring device, they met up with the acquaintance, who allegedly donned scrubs and other gear appropriate for a medical professional.
“This act of deception assisted Mr. Wright in fleeing Arizona,” a police report said.
Wright was located in Clark County, Indiana by a Flock camera which reads license plates and other “unique details” such as roof racks. At 5 p.m. on Friday, members of the Southern Indiana Regional SWAT team rearrested Wright without incident at a home in Sellersburg, Indiana, just across the Ohio River from Louisville, Kentucky.
Clark County Sheriff’s Office Assistant Chief Mark Grube admitted that the situation involving Wright was unusual. “I’ve been doing this for 18 years,” Grube said. “It’s new for me, especially for this reason, … but in some ways, it worked for him. He got out of the area, he got out of Arizona, and he came here, and it didn’t work here.”
Grube stated that Wright had been in Indiana for between 24 and 36 hours before his arrest. Clark County police assisted in the local investigation.
Wright is currently being held in Clark County jail while he awaits extradition from Arizona. Wright could spend as much as 50 years in prison if convicted of the sexual child abuse charges.