Eight of 10 “johns’ charged in prostitution sting appear for hearing
By Ed Runyan
Eight of the 10 men charged with misdemeanor soliciting prostitution in a Nov. 29 sting operation made personal appearances in Warren Municipal Court on Thursday.
The two others, including Atty. Robert J. Rohrbaugh, 44, of Canfield, did not appear personally but were represented by their lawyer.
In all 10 of the soliciting-prostitution cases, Judge Terry Ivanchak set the cases for another hearing on various dates in early March while the defendants wait for Nick Graham, an assistant Warren law director, to provide pretrial evidence to their attorneys to enable them to prepare to fight the charges.
The hearings were all just a few minutes long or less, with the same comment being made each time about setting the next hearing date in 60 days and very little else.
Among those who did stand before the judge was Todd J. Lindberg, 52, of Austintown, who was Austintown Fitch High School girls bowling coach until the school district found out about the charge.
The school district suspended Lindberg from his coaching duties. He is not a teacher in the district,
The 10 men were charged after agents with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office, Warren Police Department and other agencies posed as prostitutes on social media starting at noon Nov. 29, “chatted” with potential customers and invited them to a Warren motel.
It produced a large number of responses from men who arranged meetings for sex and were immediately taken into custody when they arrived at the motel. All were booked into the Trumbull County jail and released an hour or so later.
In addition to Rohrbaugh and Lindberg, the men facing charges are Sergio Galazia, 29, of Lowellville; Brian Glunt, 46, of Champion; Brian Kerr, 45, of Cadiz; Jason Miodrag, 36, of Greenville, Pa.; Michael Morton, 39, of Niles; Cean W. Nelson, 39, of Akron; Larry Pasquarello, 35, of Hubbard; and Gerald Rodriguez, 37, of Masury.
Galazia did not come to court. His attorney, Laura Berzonski of the Ohio Public Defender’s Office, told Judge Ivanchak that Galazia called her and didn’t come because of work issues.
The judge said that will be a problem for Galazia if it happens a second time.