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South Point man accused of rape: Alleged victim under age of 13

A South Point man was arraigned on a rape charge on Wednesday.

Joshua J. Kerns, 28, was indicted on one charge of first-degree felony rape by the Lawrence County Grand Jury on Oct. 23.

According to the indictment, Kerns is accused of engaging in sexual conduct with an underaged victim that court documents only identified by initials. The document says that Kerns “purposely compelled” the victim “to submit by force or threat of force” to “digital penetration” and that the victim “is less than 13 years of age, whether or not the offender knew the age of the other person, in violation” of the Ohio Revised Code. It said that the act occurred in Lawrence County between July 1 and July 4 of this year.

On Wednesday in the Lawrence County Common Pleas Court of Andrew Ballard, Kerns’ bond was set at $250,000 and was ordered to be monitored by GPS. He is not to have any type of contact with the victim, victim’s family or be on their property.

He is currently in the Lawrence County Jail on the cash or surety bond.