Oregon fugitive Wayne Arthur Silsbee, 62, turned himself in Friday, May 10, 1996, to officers at the Oregon City Police Department. Silsbee was wanted on child sex abuse charges since 1996, when the picture on the left was taken. The photo on the right shows Silsbee when he was booked into the Clackamas County Jail.
Photo: FBI, Clackamas County Sheriff's Office
Photo: FBI, Clackamas County Sheriff's Office

Oregon child sex abuse suspect turns himself in after 23 years as fugitive, FBI says

Wayne Arthur Silsbee, 62, turned himself in Friday to officers at the Oregon City Police Department. A July 1996 Clackamas County arrest warrant charges Silsbee with multiple counts of first-degree sodomy, first-degree sexual abuse, endangering the welfare of a minor and first-degree unlawful sexual penetration, according to an FBI news release

Clackamas County court records indicate Silsbee penetrated his victims with a foreign object. 

He is also charged federally with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. The FBI said agents obtained that warrant in September 1996. 

It was not clear what prompted Silsbee to turn himself in after more than two decades.

Silsbee is accused of assaulting several girls, all of whom were between the ages of 8 and 10, between September 1995 and April 1996, FBI officials said.

“Silsbee was acquainted with each of the minor victims, having either babysat for them or taken them to various events,” the news release said.

According to a “wanted” poster the FBI issued before Silsbee’s surrender, Silsbee worked in the past as a security guard, a tax preparer, a warehouse worker and a worker for temporary employment agencies.

He also worked in the past as a school bus driver, the FBI said. 

His hobbies were unusual and, in some cases, could have put him in close proximity with young children. 

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“Silsbee is fluent in sign language and may try to obtain employment or volunteer work in that field,” the FBI poster read. “He has previously shown interest in nudist activities, including prior membership in the American Sunbathing Association. Silsbee is purported to be an active member of the Adventist Church.”

His hobbies included computer repair and programming, short-wave radio and CB operation and singing in church or community choirs.

“He also enjoys playing musical instruments, including the piano, guitar, and handbells. In the past, Silsbee has played in handbell choirs,” the poster read

Investigators are asking anyone who had contact with Silsbee over the past 23 years to call the Oregon City tip line at 503-496-1616. Detectives believe he most recently lived in Nebraska.

Silsbee also has ties to Springfield, Missouri; California’s San Francisco Bay area; Colorado; Arizona; and Washington state. 

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