Athens Co. officials form task force to investigate serial rape suspect

ATHENS, OH (WCMH) — Athens County officials have formed a task force to investigate tips about serial rape suspect Shawn Lawson Jr.

The Athens County Prosecutor’s Office released information about the task force Sunday morning.

Lawson is being held on a $3 million bond for charges of rape, attempted rape, felonious assault, kidnapping and aggravated burglary. He is suspected to be involved in at least three sexual assaults in Athens between 2006 and 2015, and has been linked to a 2017 sexual assault in Lancaster.

A line has been established so anyone with information or tips can call 740-541-1510 and leave a message. A victim advocate will return a call to each message received, according to the press release from Prosecutor Keller J. Blackburn’s office.

The Athens County Prosecutor’s Office, Athens County Sheriff’s Office, Athens City Police Department, Ohio University Police Department, Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification, and Federal Bureau of Investigations are all involved in the task force. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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