Eastlake City Council president pleads not guilty to solicitation

Published: Mar. 1, 2023 at 7:54 AM EST|Updated: Mar. 1, 2023 at 12:25 PM EST
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LAKE COUNTY, Ohio (WOIO) - The attorney for the Eastlake City Council president entered a written plea of not guilty on his behalf in Willoughby Municipal Court Wednesday morning.

John Meyers, 57, was arrested by the Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force in February for allegedly trying to buy sex.

Meyers is charged with solicitation.

“The point of our task forces is to send a message to those who buy and sell human beings: We’re coming for you, we’re going to bust you and make sure everybody knows what you did. Don’t buy sex in Ohio!” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost.

Wickliffe police officers and Lake County Sheriff deputies worked with the task force.

Five other men were also charged with solicitation:

  • Ronald Bevier, Columbia Station, 30
  • Alvin Bridges, Euclid, 47
  • Andrew Champa, Wickliffe, 40
  • Garrett Kellogg, Strongsville, 20
  • Salvatore Longo, Beachwood, 44

Bridges also faces a felony charge of drug possession, according to Yost.

Meyers is currently free on a $5,000 bond. HIs next court date has not yet been scheduled.

“The Lake County Sheriff’s Office is proud to be part of the Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force and proud of the collaborative effort of all the involved agencies,” said Chief Deputy Robert Izzo of the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. “If even one victim of human trafficking can be identified and helped, then the operation is a success and worth the effort. We will continue to work to help identify those who are taking advantage of these victims and bring them to justice.”

Four potential victims of human trafficking were also identified and offered social services.