Ex-Big Red Coach Belardine Expected to Enter Guilty Plea in Steubenville Rape Case Charge

A former Steubenville High School volunteer football coach, who was one of six people named by a special grand jury investigating aspects of the Steubenville rape case, is expected to enter a guilty plea April 22 in Jefferson County Common Pleas Court.

Matthew Belardine, of 113 Wilma Ave., is charged with four misdemeanor counts, including allowing an underage person to consume beer or liquor, obstructing official business, falsification and contributing to the unruliness or delinquency of a child.

A pretrial for Belardine and two other defendants in the case was held Monday by telephone with visiting Summit County retired Judge Patricia Ann Cosgrove, attorneys for the defendants and attorneys with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office. Belardine is being represented by attorney Dennis McNamara of Columbus.

Attorney General Mike DeWine called for a special grand jury following the convictions of two Steubenville High School students in March 2013. The students were convicted of rape in connection with the August 2012 rape of a Weirton teenage girl following a series of parties.

Also indicted was Steubenville City Schools Superintendent Mike McVey, charged with one count of tampering with evidence and two counts of obstructing justice, both felonies.

McVey was also indicted with two misdemeanors including one count of falsification and one count of obstructing official business.

A hearing has been scheduled for May 7 concerning pending motions in McVey’s case.

A trial date for McVey is expected to be determined at the hearing.

Another hearing is scheduled for April 22 for William Rhinaman of Wintersville for Rhinaman to change attorneys.

Rhinaman is charged with tampering with evidence, obstructing justice, obstructing official business and perjury.