Conviction For Suspect Linked To Fatal Shooting

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ATHENS, Ohio – A suspect tied to the recent fatal shooting on the west side of Athens has pleaded guilty to firearm, drug and other felony charges.

Jonathon Champe McLaughlin (Southeast Ohio Regional Jail)

Jonathon Champe McLaughlin, 23, of Glouster entered the plea to a bill of information Tuesday that charged him with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, having weapons while under disability, aggravated trafficking in drugs and burglary. Each charge is classified as a felony.

The use of a bill of information means the defendant waived their right for a grand jury to hear the case.

Judge Patrick J. Lang sentenced McLaughlin to 18 years in prison. He will be subject to five years of mandatory post-release control.

McLaughlin was one of four individuals charged with burglary for allegedly going to a Glouster home and stealing four firearms the day before the November 25 shooting at 221 W. Washington Street. Charles Duncan, Sr., 55, of Logan, died as a result of the shooting.

Michael Allen Russell, 18, and Bernard Mitchell, 23, are both facing involuntary manslaughter charges in connection with the death of Duncan.

Troy A. Vermillion, 28, was also charged with burglary.

Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn said investigators are considering the burglary charges connected to the shooting, but they are still looking into the exact roles the men allegedly played in the incident.

“The circumstances surrounding this case remain under investigation but should serve as a reminder of the results of drug use and drug trafficking,” Blackburn wrote in a statement after McLaughlin’s sentencing. “In this matter, the results were the ultimate tragedy, the loss of a life.”

He encouraged anyone suffering with a substance use disorder to contact the prosecutor’s office at 740-592-3208.

This case was was investigated by the Athens Police Department, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Athens County Sheriff’s Office, Athens Major Crimes Unit and the Athens County Prosecutor’s Office.