September 17, 2014
OROVILLE, Calif. (AP) - A 29-year-old Northern California man is in custody on suspicion of torture and false imprisonment after authorities say they found a woman behind drywall mud in the attic of a home.
The woman told authorities she had been held against her will there for about two weeks and repeatedly sexually assaulted by the suspect, Lawson Rankin.
Butte County Sheriff's Sgt. Jason Hail says Rankin was covered in drywall mud when sheriff's deputies arrived at the Oroville home to check on the woman on Monday. Rankin denied having seen her, but authorities saw an area of the kitchen wet with the mud and broke the seal to find the woman trapped inside.
Rankin was being held without bail at Butte County Jail. It was not immediately clear whether he had an attorney.
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