Lima woman to serve probation for sexual conduct with minor

LIMA — A Lima woman convicted of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor will spend 29 days in jail and three years on community control, a judge ordered Monday.

Sonya Gage, 28, pleaded guilty in December to third-degree felony sexual conduct with a then 14-year-old boy from July 6 through July 10. She is ordered to register as a Tier II sex offender for 25 years, confirming her address with the sheriff’s office every six months.

According to the indictment, Gage engaged in sexual conduct with the boy knowing he was younger than 16. Carroll Creighton, Gage’s assistant public defender, said on Monday that Gage knows she should not have made the choice she did and she is remorseful.

Creighton said the woman struggles with mental illness, for which she is receiving treatment. He said the victim “applied pressure” in the situation, facilitating the offense.

Allen County Common Pleas Court Judge Jeffrey Reed said that Gage was the adult in the situation and that a 14-year-old does not have the ability to consent to sexual activity. He ordered that Gage have no contact with the boy.

Reed ordered a mental health evaluation to determine if Gage qualifies for mental health court. She will be subject to random drug and alcohol testing and must pay court costs.

If Gage is found to have violated the terms of her sex offender registration or community control, she could spend five years in prison.