GALLIPOLIS — The Gallia County Court of Common Pleas arraigned a Gallipolis man Wednesday morning for the alleged rape of two juveniles.
Bruce Johnson III, 20, of Gallipolis, was arrested by Gallipolis police Feb. 13 after an alleged incident reported to police on Oct. 30, 2015. According to police reports, a Gallia County sheriff’s deputy first advised Gallipolis police officers of the potential rape of a 4-year-old juvenile. After several interviews and investigations, officers determined another potential juvenile listed in reports as being 2 years old also allegedly suffered from a similar crime.
Reports say both victims suffered apparent minor injuries after the alleged incident occurred in Gallipolis. Reports also state Johnson is a family member of the victims.
Johnson appeared in court with appointed counsel Graham Woodyard. Johnson entered a plea of not guilty and his bond was set at $100,000 with a 10-percent secure fee.
Johnson currently sits in Gallia County Jail. He has a jury trial dated for 9 a.m. May 4, if no plea arrangement is reached.
Both counts are considered first-degree felony charges and address the Ohio Revised Code Section 2907.02. According to the code, if an offense is committed against an individual less than 10 years of age, a convicted offender could potentially be sentenced to life in prison without parole, should the court see fit.
An alleged offender must have engaged in sexual conduct with a victim for an offense to be considered rape. Gross sexual imposition is generally considered to be unwanted sexual touching. Sexual conduct refers to penetration.
Dean Wright can be reached at (740) 446-2342, Ext. 2103.