It didn't matter that the girl consented to having sex.
By BOB JACKSON
VINDICATOR COURTHOUSE REPORTER
YOUNGSTOWN -- Tristan Reese couldn't resist the lure of a young girl who enticed him into having sex, his lawyer said.
Too bad, said Judge Maureen A. Cronin of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court. She sent Reese to prison for 18 months.
"You had sex with a child. I don't know what your problem is," Judge Cronin said. "You violated every rule of civilization."
Deena Calabrese, assistant prosecutor, said Reese had sex with his girlfriend -- who was 13 at the time.
Reese, 20, is listed in court records with a Waverly Avenue address, though his lawyer, Paul Conn, said he now lives in Warren. He pleaded guilty in April to four counts of having unlawful sexual contact with a minor.
Judge Cronin sentenced Reese to 18 months on each count, but ordered that the sentences be served at the same time.
Here's the law
Under Ohio law, Reese could not be charged with rape because the girl was 13 and consented to having sex, Calabrese said.
Conn said the girl was the aggressor and actually initiated the sexual contact with Reese.
"It wasn't as if he grabbed the girl off the playground and had his way with her," Conn said. "He just wasn't smart enough to say no."
Reese was living in the girl's home at the time, with her parents' permission, Conn said. He called Reese "misguided, but not evil."
The judge noted that Reese had previously gotten into trouble for phoning a bomb threat to Howland High School, which Reese said he did because he was "young and stupid." That didn't sit well with Judge Cronin.
"It's all about you getting attention and having sex," she said. "Well, let's see how quickly you become the focus of someone else's attention in prison."