One of three men accused in sex scheme pleads guilty

LISBON – Nicholas Meeks, one of three men accused in a scheme to have sex with two young teenage girls in late 2012, pleaded guilty Monday in county Common Pleas Court to two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

Meeks, 23, North Sumner Street, East Palestine, was one of two men accused of having sex with two girls, ages 14 and 15, in a home on Anderson Boulevard in East Liverpool on Dec. 29 and/or Dec. 30.

Another man, Dylan Rhodes, 21, Anderson Boulevard, East Liverpool, is similarly charged with two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. Assistant County Prosecutor Timothy McNicol said Rhodes has also pleaded to the two counts.

Both men are facing up to 18 months in prison on each count and would be required to be registered Tier II sex offenders. Sentencing is set for each of the men in April.

Charges are still pending against a third man, Chris Monte, 49, Bell School Road, East Liverpool, who is charged with corrupting another with drugs for allegedly providing cocaine to the 15-year-old girl on the same dates, while in a vehicle heading into Columbiana County from the Alliance area.

The charge against Monte is a second-degree felony carrying a mandatory prison sentence if convicted, which could be a maximum sentence of eight years.

According to McNicol, prosecutors believe the girls were taken from the Alliance area, driven to East Liverpool by Monte and then had sexual relations with Rhodes and Meeks in the home where Rhodes was living at the time.