48-day sentence for volunteer coach for probation violation after Ohio high school rape case

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STEUBENVILLE, Ohio — A volunteer football coach whose Ohio house was the scene of a party that preceded the rape of a girl by two high school football players received a two-month sentence Monday for violating his probation in that case.

Matt Belardine was one of six people charged last year by a grand jury investigating whether other laws were broken in the case of a 16-year-old West Virginia girl raped after an alcohol-fueled August 2012 house party attended by Steubenville High School football players.

In that case, Belardine, 27, pleaded no contest to one count of making a false statement and one count of enabling underage drinking. He received a suspended six-month sentence and was ordered to serve 10 days in jail and one year of supervision.

Last week, Belardine admitted leaving the state without permission and going to a bar, consuming alcohol, and being arrested on a charge of disorderly conduct in Arizona, in violation of his probation.

On Monday, Special Judge Patricia Ann Cosgrove gave Belardine credit for 12 days already served, meaning he will spend the next 48 days in jail, said Dan Tierney, a spokesman for the Ohio Attorney General's Office. A message was left for Belardine's attorney.

Cosgrove also ordered Belardine to undergo a drug and alcohol assessment and said he will be subject to random substance abuse tests until his new probation period of six months ends, according to Tierney.

Belardine was arrested last month in Arizona at a protest over the grand jury decision in the Ferguson, Missouri, police shooting, according to media reports. Scottsdale authorities said Belardine was fighting with protesters.

Belardine "did not conduct himself as a 'responsible law abiding citizen' while in Scottsdale, Arizona," contrary to conditions of his probation, according to a filing in Jefferson County court this month by the attorney general's office.

Two football players were found delinquent in the rape case; one was sentenced to two years; the other was released after a one-year sentence and rejoined the football team this fall.

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