Columbia man arrested on charges of molestation and assault

Thursday, April 8, 2010 | 11:19 a.m. CDT; updated 9:02 p.m. CDT, Thursday, April 8, 2010

COLUMBIA — A Columbia man was arrested early Wednesday evening after witnesses reported he had molested a child and assaulted a woman who tried to stop him.

According to a news release from the Boone County Sheriff's Department, the woman told deputies that she had found the man, Lawrence Kenney Jr., 42, of Columbia, molesting the child, who is under the age of 14.

The woman and a witness told deputies that when the woman tried to stop the molestation, the man assaulted her.

The woman and the child ran into a nearby apartment, but Kenney forced his way into it and began to strangle the adult victim with both hands, according to the release. He stopped when he learned that law enforcement had been called.

When the deputies attempted to take Kenney into custody he fled briefly on foot then resisted arrest, the release said. Deputies shocked him with a Taser and arrested him on suspicion of first-degree burglary, second-degree assault, second-degree property damage, felony resisting arrest and felony child molestation.

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