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Officers possible focus of FBI investigation

The three corrections officers accused of assaulting an inmate apparently may be the subject of an FBI investigation.

“I have been contacted by the FBI,” Lawrence County Sheriff Jeff Lawless said. “It appears they are looking into the situation of the corrections officers.”

However, a spokesman for the Cincinnati office of the FBI could neither confirm nor deny any investigation.

Ronald S. Hatfield, 25, Jeremy S. Hanshaw, 36, and Jason Mays, 22, were arrested last month following an investigation ordered by Lawless. The investigation came about after allegations arose that the three corrections officers had possibly mistreated an inmate. Investigators concluded the three officers had allegedly been involved in “the inappropriate treatment” of an inmate who had been booked into the jail on a charge of disorderly conduct.

Hatfield and Hanshaw are charged with felonious assault while Mays is charged with tampering with evidence.

A Lawrence County Grand Jury will meet this week to determine if there is enough evidence against the officers to issue indictments on the state charges.

Hatfield and Hanshaw joined the sheriff’s office as corrections officers in June 2013. Mays, who was hired to work at the jail in June of this year, has been fired. Hatfield and Hanshaw are on paid administrative leave as required by their union bargaining unit agreement.