3rd man involved in teen sex case pleads guilty

LISBON – The final man involved in a scheme to bring two teenage girls to Liverpool Township and have sex with them pleaded guilty to a charge in Columbiana County Common Pleas Court on Tuesday.

Chris Monte, 49, pleaded guilty to a first-degree misdemeanor charge of permitting drug abuse. The charge was amended from a second-degree felony charge of corrupting another with drugs, which could have meant up to eight years in prison.

Assistant County Prosecutor Timothy McNicol said Monte drove a then 15-year-old girl from the Alliance area to Liverpool Township, while providing her with cocaine during the ride. McNicol said he plans to ask for a six-month term in the county jail for Monte at sentencing. He will also be subject to a six-month driver’s suspension. Monte’s attorney, Dominic Frank, said he plans to ask for a lesser sentence or probation.

Monte was not charged with any sex-related crimes, but his two co-defendants were. Dylan Edgar Rhodes, 21, Anderson Boulevard, East Liverpool, and Nicholas James Meeks, 23, North Sumner Street, East Palestine, both pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. They are accused of having sex with both a 14-year-old and 15-year-old girl in Rhodes’ home on Anderson Boulevard the night of Dec. 29 and early morning hours of Dec. 30.

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 for all three men is scheduled for the afternoon of April 21 before Judge C. Ashley Pike.