Details Of Bloody, Brutal Rape Emerge In Red Bank Court Documents

Victim Interviewed While Undergoing Treatment At Erlanger, Detective Reports

Tuesday, July 2, 2013 - by Judy Frank

A Red Bank man and woman charged with a rape so brutal it left blood running down the legs of their alleged victim are scheduled to appear in court on July 29, according to court documents.

Joseph Michael Lawhorn, 32 – who also goes by the name of Joseph Michael Hislar – reportedly used unknown foreign objects as well as his own body parts to rape the woman. His codefendant, 22-year-old Samantha Heather Cronin, is charged with raping the woman with her fist, according to a complaint filed against her by Red Bank Detective Michael Ray.

The two reportedly held the victim captive in their apartment for some time following the multiple rapes, court documents say.

“After the sexual encounters (the victim) tried to leave,” according to Detective Ray’s complaint. “Mr. Hislar/Lawhorn said she could not leave and would not leave until her injuries healed. (The victim) said that both suspects hid her clothes from her . . . (and) that at one point she tried to use her cell phone and was assaulted again and the phone was taken.”

The victim managed to escape the next day after the suspects went to sleep, the detective said the woman told him, and then went to her residence and called police.

According to the complaint filed by the detective, the two patrol officers who responded to her call found that “(the victim) had evidence on her of being assaulted, and blood was running down her legs.”

She told officers where the assault had occurred, the report noted, and an officer was sent to that location where he found the suspects. 

The victim was taken to Erlanger Hospital, where Detective Ray interviewed her. At that time, he noted in his report, the victim was in pain, her right eye was swollen shut and her left eye contained blood around the eyeball.

‘While talking with the victim (at the hospital) she stated that she had met Ms. Cronin earlier in the day on June 25, 2013 at her apartment . . . and around 5:30 p.m. (the victim) went back to the apartment to meet Ms. Cronin and Mr. Hislar/Lawhorn,” the detective reported.

All three were drinking, he wrote, and at one point they began talking about sex and working as escorts. “(The victim) stated that she did show possible interest but then things changed.”

Lawler, whom the victim described as irate, punched her in the eye and then began to try to “dominate” her, the report says.

Then, with Ms. Cronin present in the room, Lawler began to rape the victim in a variety of ways, the detective wrote. After that, he noted, the victim said Ms. Cronin used to her fist to rape the other woman.

According to court documents, both defendants will be represented by public defenders.

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