A Delaware woman who arrested last month in a police sting pleaded guilty Monday afternoon to a charge of soliciting.
She and two other women were arrested in January during the prostitution sting operation.
Lindsey Renee Hodges, 23, of 5 Delta St., appeared in Delaware Municipal Court Monday afternoon for a pretrial hearing before Judge David Sunderman.
At the pretrial hearing, Hodges pleaded guilty to a charge of soliciting, a third-degree misdemeanor.
Hodges, along with her two co-defendants, Sheena A. Shaheen, 43, of Hilliard and Stacie Schell, 29, of 122 N. Washington St., Delaware, were scheduled to stand trial before a jury today.
Shaheen’s attorney, Jeffrey Burkham, filed a motion for a continuance Monday and the motion was granted by Sunderman.
Schell did not appear for her hearing and a warrant was issued for her arrest.
The trial for Shaheen and Schell has not been rescheduled.
Elizabeth Matune, a prosecutor for the city of Delaware, said that Delaware police responded to an ad on Backpage, a site where users go to find sexual services, that appeared to offer sexual services for hire.
Undercover police spoke to the three women and made arrangements to meet at a local hotel on Jan. 20, Matune said.
When the women arrived, undercover officers once again negotiated the services and price. After that, officers took the women into custody. They were charged with solicitation.
Hodges’ attorney, James Klein, said Hodges was motivated by a heroin addiction at the time and was offering sexual services to support her habit. Klein said Hodges has had a heroin problem since she was 18.
“It’s a tragic situation,” Klein said.
Hodges pleaded guilty on Feb. 5 to a charge of possession of drugs, a fifth-degree felony, in Delaware County Common Pleas Court and was given 30 days in jail by Common Pleas Judge Everett Krueger to get clean so she can begin an intervention program.
Klein said she will be “intensely” supervised during her treatment program.
Sunderman ordered her to pay a $250 fine and sentenced her to serve 30 days in the Delaware County Jail but said the days she was currently serving in the felony case would count toward the new sentence.
Hodges will be released from the Delaware County Jail on March 3.
Schell and Shaheen have entered not-guilty pleas to the solicitation charge. Sunderman said Monday that the potential penalties for the charge are are no more than 60 days in jail, a fine not to exceed $500 or 200 hours of community service.
Schell and Shaheen were both out on bond Monday but a warrant has been issued for Schell’s arrest.
Schell was also charged with possession of less than 100 grams of marijuana; she pleaded not guilty. She will be tried on the possession charge during the solicitation trial. This is Schell’s third drug-related charged in Delaware Municipal Court.
Initially, Delaware police said they had reason to believe the women were victims of human trafficking and contacted the Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force but, during the investigation, authorities learned the women were not being trafficked.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.