Convicted teens to learn of rehab procedures

STEUBENVILLE -The two teens convicted in the Steubenville rape case will find out on June 14 in juvenile court what their rehabilitation plans will include and what reporting requirements will be imposed as sex offenders.

Visiting Judge Tom Lipps will preside over the hearing at 10:30 a.m.

Lipps in March found Trent Mays, 17, of Bloomingdale and Ma’Lik Richmond, 16, of Steubenville, delinquent of a charge of rape. Mays also was found delinquent of a charge of illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material for having a picture of the 16-year-old victim in an outgoing text message on his cell phone.

Lipps sentenced Richmond and Mays to spend at least one year in an Ohio Department of Youth Services facility or until they are 21 years old.

He ordered Mays to spend at least one year in the youth center for illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material.

According to a statement from juvenile court, Mays and Richmond are housed at the Cuyahoga Boys School institution and doing well there. Lipps at the time of sentencing told Mays and Richmond that the Paint Creek Light House Youth Center, a privately run facility for the Ohio Department of Youth Services, has good programs to rehabilitate sex offenders. According to the release from juvenile court, Lipps will allow the teens to be moved there.

“DYS uses Paint Creek for certain offenders that they feel have a good chance at rehabilitation in a specialized treatment facility. Paint Creek is located in Bainbridge, near Chillicothe. It has no bars or barbed fence and is in a remote location. It is staff secure with little possibility of leave without permission,” according to officials.

“Paint Creek is the best facility DYS has to offer. Its treatment modality, particularly with sex offenders, is superior to other DYS placements. The living circumstances are more pleasant at Paint Creek especially as compared to dormitory institutions. Paint Creek is more intense and thus harder than just sitting back in other institutions. The length of time at Paint Creek is usually longer than the minimum term because the treatment should be concluded before release. The court is very familiar with Paint Creek, having visited there many times over the years and has no doubt that it is the best placement for these defendants for their rehabilitation. It is believed that they will do well there and much better than in other DYS institutions.”

DYS officials issued a statement Wednesday stating Paint Creek has to evaluate the teens and it is the facility that will make the final determination if they are accepted.

The court in its statement said a determination of the level of sex offender for the teens must be determined prior to placement at Paint Creek.

The juveniles face a lifetime reporting requirement (Tier III) and must report their address to the county sheriff where they live and work. Tier II offenders must report their address every six months for 20 years. Tier I requires address reporting every year for 10 years.

The Ohio Supreme Court in 2012 ruled that juveniles classified as Tier III offenders can’t have their names placed on an Internet registry for sex offenders. Neighbors still will be notified by mail or residents can go to the sheriff’s department to request a list of registered sex offenders in the county. The name of the juvenile offender can be released.

The juvenile offenders can petition the court to lower the sex offender classification and eventually release them from the reporting requirements after completion of treatment and no further sexual offenses.