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APD cruisers are parked at the department's headquarters. (FILE)

Athens Police Department officers shoot suspect during chase

Athens Police Department officers shot a suspect during a vehicle pursuit Saturday morning.

Officers pursued the suspect after responding to a reported vehicle theft near Hope Drive, according to a news release from APD Chief Tom Pyle.

The release states that officers stopped the vehicle at one point in the chase, and before the chase resumed “an officer involved shooting incident (involving all three Athens City Officers) occurred.”

A short distance later, the chase ended in a crash at the intersection of Hooper Ridge and State Route 550, according to the release.

The suspect who officers shot, Samuel Lott, an 18-year-old from Nelsonville, was transported to a hospital in Columbus for treatment of his gunshot wound, according to the release. After treatment, he was released to APD custody and was transported to Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail.

No officers were injured during the incident, the release states. Lott has been charged with receiving stolen property, a felony of the fourth degree and fleeing and eluding law enforcement officers, a felony of the third degree, according to the release. He is being held on $15,000 bond, according to the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail website.

Jacob Bowens, a 19-year-old from Carbon Hill, was also charged with receiving stolen property and transported to Southeastern Ohio Regional jail, where he is being held on $5,045 bond, according to the release.

A conviction for receiving stolen property comes with six to 18 months of jail or prison time and a maximum fine of $5,000.

A sentence for fleeing and eluding officers ranges from one to five years of prison time and carries a maximum fine of $10,000.

The three APD officers involved in the shooting, who Pyle did not name in the release, have been removed from active duty until an administrative review of the incident is complete.

Pyle has asked Athens County Sheriff Rodney Smith to investigate the shooting because it occurred outside Athens city limits and Smith has asked the Bureau of Criminal Investigation to assist in the investigation, according to the release.


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