Registered sex offender taken into custody after OSU fondling incident

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A registered sex offender with a long history of groping incidents has been arrested for criminal trespass, sexual imposition, and burglary, following a fondling incident on Ohio State’s campus.

An Ohio State public safety notice was sent by OSU Police late Tuesday following a report that a female student was sexually assaulted on campus.

The student told police that she was fondled by an unknown male.

She was sitting on a bench outside of Knowlton Hall, on Woodruff Avenue around 2:47pm Tuesday, when the man asked to sit beside her. Shortly after, he “fondled her lower body” and then fled east in the direction of Hitchcock Hall.

Around 8:15pm Tuesday, a woman working on her computer on the second floor of the Ohio Union said she was approached by an unknown male who sat behind her and asked if he could charge his phone. Moments later, police said the suspect fondled her lower body.

The man left the area after the woman confronted him.

OSU police said Wednesday that 59-year-old Lonnie Sturdivant was wanted for questioning in relation to the first incident.He also matches the description given by the second victim.

Sturdivant has a history of fondling-related arrests, including two in 2015 for incidents at the Columbus State Community College library and an OSU area Panera Bread. He is a registered sex offender.

Security video places Sturdivant in the OSU’s Thompson library a short time after the Knowlton Hall incident. According to court documents, Sturdivant was banned from campus in May of 2015.

OSU Police tweeted shortly before 4am that they had arrested Sturdivant.

OSU Police is investigating the crime and asking that you call 614-292-2121 if you have any details.

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