82-year-old man suspected in multiple cases of child rape - WSMV Channel 4

82-year-old man suspected in multiple cases of child rape

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Eugene Hourihan (Photo from Lawrenceburg PD) Eugene Hourihan (Photo from Lawrenceburg PD)
LAWRENCEBURG, TN (WSMV) -

An 82-year-old Lawrenceburg man has been arrested and charged in the alleged sexual abuse of several children, including an 8-year-old girl.

Eugene Frank Hourihan is suspected in multiple incidents at a Lawrenceburg church, police said, and the case will now be bound to the grand jury for additional possible charges.

Investigators first became aware of the alleged abuse after a parent reported seeing Hourihan assaulting another child at the church, which has only been identified as a Nazarene church.

"We put him in jail on one charge today, because we do feel like he is a threat to society and to children," said Lawrenceburg Police Capt. Don Laws.

Police believe Hourihan sexually abused at least three children at the church in the past year. Each victim is between the ages of 6 and 12, and Laws said the department had to move fast to protect other children.

"With all the experience I've had, his patterns are showing me this has probably been going on for quite sometime," Laws said.

Investigators say the 82-year-old grandfather comes across as nice, first luring potential victims by playing with them and putting parents at ease with his friendly disposition.

Now, officials are asking any parents of children who may have come in contact with Hourihan to call child abuse investigators at 931-766-1279.

"If he's been around their children, or any concerns they may have, to come forward," Laws said.

Hourihan is jailed on a $100,000 bond, and a hearing is set for Jan. 4.

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