The Good Wife: The Shocking Betrayal and Brutal Murder of a Godly Woman in Texas by Clint Richmond (August 2007)

Publication Date:
August 2007
HarperCollins Publishers

Reviewed by:
5 Stars
On March 22, 2012
Last modified:July 5, 2012


As a fast paced nonfiction with only 338 pages, this book is definitely a true crime classic and should be a top pick for any fan of the genre.

In 1996, Roger and Penny Scaggs celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary. To outsiders, it appeared to marriage blessed by the hand of God. Roger was a successful businessman in the world of technology. And Penny, although considered a homemaker, devoted much of her time teaching young women how to be the perfect Christian wife and visiting with the elderly in nearby nursing homes.

Of course, things aren’t always what they seem.

The Good Wife by Clint RichmondWithin the last few years, Roger was giving in to what seemed to be a midlife crisis. He grew distant from his wife and adult daughter, Sarah. He took up sail boating and flying. He carried on a rather torrid affair with a much younger woman.

But Penny Scaggs was a Godly woman. She did not believe in divorce. She believed that marriage was “until death we do part.”

Sadly, death would come sooner than she expect.

On March 6, 1996, as Penny played her beautiful baby grand piano in the couple’s Austin, Texas, home, she was bludgeoned in the back of the head. Then her killer slashed her throat and stabbed her repeatedly with one of her own kitchen knives. Hours later, Roger Scaggs would discover his wife’s body.

But did he really discover her, or was it just a smokescreen? After all, who else could have wanted Penny did? She was well loved by the young and old alike but her husband stood to lose half of all he owned and be burdened with a lifetime alimony payment should he leave marriage.

Would a man who spent 35 years in a marriage to a wonderful woman reach that far for freedom?

Author Clint Richmond shares the story of Mr. & Mrs. Roger Scaggs and the secrets that lay behind their closed doors. Although the story seems to have all the elements of a dime store romance novel, Richmond shares the story in such a respectful, elegant manor that it is anything but cheap.

The Good Wife is a well written, detailed and expertly organized account of the life of Penny Scaggs and the sins and eventual conviction of her husband, Roger Scaggs.

As a fast paced nonfiction with only 338 pages, this book is definitely a true crime classic and should be a top pick for any fan of the genre.


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Roger Scaggs remains imprisoned at the Duncan Prison Unit in Diboll, Texas. He will be eligible for parole in November 2014.

Limited information was available for Vanessa Ann Ferguson, but it is believed she continues to live in Texas.

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8 Responses to “The Good Wife: The Shocking Betrayal and Brutal Murder of a Godly Woman in Texas by Clint Richmond (August 2007)”

  1. joy says:

    I think everything that has happened to Roger Scaggs is karma!! I love the fact that his skank used him for his money,(obviously that’s all she wanted, I mean look at him ewwwww) then left him high and dry holding the bag!!! Love it! Sounds like his daughter is a nasty skank user to. Hope he’s still being used in pison accept used as sex toy there.That broad must really have been desperate for money touching this old ugly prune of a dude!! I think I might throw up just thinking about it!!

  2. Kim Cantrell says:

    Joy, I’m pretty sure most people would agree with you. Roger Scaggs made his bed and now he has to lie in it.

  3. Bill Ray says:

    OK Your a TOTAL and COMPLETE IDIOT IF you THINK this man was so STUPID He put a bag Chocked full of Latex Gloves the Murder weapons (knife&pipe) along with very expensive rings from her finger that ring would have been worth several thousand.
    Now this considered how about the DAUGHTER?? She had a PERFECT motive murder her mother frame Daddy!. Roger Scaggs didn’t get where he got being stupid only an IDIOT would have placed that stuff in a dumpster where he worked!. I Will ALWAYS think the DAUGHTER DONE IT! Or a boyfriend of hers!. I bet she got EVERY DIME!.

    • Brooklyn Monarch says:

      I’d have to agree. It’s like, you mean to tell me Roger would run the risk of Investigators getting to that dumpster BEFORE it was dumped out? You mean to tell me Roger would run the risk of ANY household fibers, blood, DNA, etc, being inside that dumpster?

      That man is smart enough to first of all not place all those items closely knit together in one bag so be served right up for Detectives, but then place it right where he worked? When this happened, they had surveillance cameras all over and I would imagine where he worked definetly did. Why nobody pulled those recordings I always wondered.

      Now I dont know “who” did it, but I do not think it was Roger. The random hair on the knife is enough to raise reasonable doubt and the “bag-o-tricks” at his job is just absurd.

      • Estella says:

        I agree with you Bill Ray total complete idiots!!
        Are you serious!! (joy and kim) its that narrow minded thinking that got him imprisoned in the first place!! so please throw up some where else!!
        and the hair on the knife, would of difinitely raised reasonable doubt in my mind.

    • Strawn says:

      Actually murderers make these kinds of stupid mistakes all the time. He knew that dumpster was being picked up and hauled of early the next morning so he thought it would be safe to dump the incriminating items. After all, a stranger would have kept the diamond ring that was found in the bag. He said it was stolen from her. Who else would have access to her ring? It’s funny that you are gullible enough to think otherwise intelligent people don’t make these stupid mistakes when they are in a panick and trying to cover up a murder they just committed.

  4. [...] he began a torrid affair with Vanessa Ann Ferguson, a young woman that wasn’t much older than his [...]

  5. Baya says:

    This woman was an Aunt to me and Roger was a creepy, dark, disturbed man! I PRAY to GOD they do not grant him any parole and if there is a Heaven, I am certain that Penny is there.
    Taken way too early and in such a tragic, sad way. I remember Sarah from my very young years and we played together and had a friendship. I have heard so much negativity about her over the years and I only hope that she can find some peace and a way through this darkness for herself.

    Love you Penny. You never ever deserved this! May you rot in prison and hell, Roger!

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