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Missing sex offender found operating sandwich shop

By Seth Burkett · 340-2355

After disappearing for more than two years, a sex offender is back in Morgan County jail.

Morgan County Sheriff Greg Bartlett said a tip from the public helped deputies track Scott Leon Roden, 45, to Lafayette.

“He was staying there under an assumed name,” Bartlett said. “He was running a sandwich shop down in Lafayette.”

Deputies arrested Roden on Tuesday on a warrant charging him with failing to register as a sex offender.

“It’s good to have this guy back where he belongs,” Bart-lett said. “Given his history, it’s good to have him off the streets.”

Roden was convicted in 1998 of sexually abusing a 7-year-old girl in Morgan County. He last registered with the Sheriff’s Department in January 2005.

For more than two years, his whereabouts remained unknown, until media attention brought in tips from the public.

Bartlett said his department received information that Roden might have been in Georgia or in nearby Lawrence County at one time.

Bartlett thanked the public and the U.S. Marshal Service for helping locate Roden.

“We expect to make another charge of failing to notify
(authorities that he had moved) under the new law. There are possible charges in Lafayette, where he was picked up,” Bartlett said.

Bartlett said the warrant calls for a $750 bond on Roden’s release, but he intends to ask a judge to increase that amount due to Roden’s history and the potential he will face other charges.

“He’s obviously a flight risk, so we’ll ask for a higher bond,” Bartlett said.

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