Muskingum County Man Arrested for Rape
Sheriff David Thoroughman stated that the Portsmouth Police Department received a report on Monday, October 10, 2022, stating that an underage female had inappropriate pictures and videos on her cell phone.
The Sheriff's Office was later notified by Adena Pike Medical Center, located in Pike County, that the female victim was there for treatment.
The detective, working jointly with Scioto County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Crime Unit, was able to determine that the juvenile victim met the suspect through Facebook.
This occurred in October of 2021, when the victim was 12 years old. At that time, the suspect had sent the victim multiple naked photographs of himself as well as videos of himself doing sexual acts.
Sheriff Thoroughman stated the investigation revealed thatthe suspect had traveled to Scioto County to have sexual conduct with the juvenile victim. The detective learned that the suspect lived in Philo, Ohio. As a result, the Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office was contacted, and they assisted in getting a search warrant for the suspect’s residence.
Sheriff Thoroughman stated that on Wednesday, October 12, 2022, the Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office, along with Scioto County detectives, executed a search warrant at the suspect’s residence, located at 629 4th St., Philo, Ohio. The suspect was arrested without incident.
Arrested was Michael Leland Nethers, age 61, of Philo, Ohio. Nethers was charged with one count of Rape, a felony of the 1st degree, 4 counts of Disseminating Matter Harmful to Juveniles, a misdemeanor of the 1st degree, and Pandering Obscenity Involving a Minor, a felony of the 2nd degree. Nethers appeared in Portsmouth Municipal Court on Thursday, October 13th, and is being held on a $150,000 bond.
Sheriff Thoroughman would like to thank the Adena Regional Medical Center, the Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office, and the Portsmouth Police Department for all their assistance in the investigation.
Sheriff David Thoroughman stated this is still an ongoing investigation that could result in more charges being filed on a later date.
Anyone with information regarding this case should contact Detective Sgt. Jodi Conkel @ 740-351-1091.