Man pleads to molesting underage Indiana girls

Jesse Meckley fled prosecution for months last year.
Published: Aug. 9, 2022 at 9:55 PM EDT
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FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ind. (WXIX) - A Brookville man charged with molesting three teenage girls has pleaded guilty a year after fleeing before his trial was scheduled to begin, according to Franklin County prosecutors.

Jesse Meckley was arrested in September 2020. His trial was delayed due to the pandemic. It was placed on hold again after prosecutors say he stopped showing up to court in August 2021. He was arrested last December.

Prosecutors say Meckley sexually assaulted three teenage girls in Brookville.

Last week, he pleaded guilty to one count of child molestation and two counts of sexual misconduct with a minor.

One alleged victim says she wanted to come forward to tell her story to spread awareness about sexual assault. She says it was scary not knowing where he was for those months he fled.

“I was kind of just nervous,” she said. “I felt like I seen his face everywhere, I guess. Kind of felt like I seen him in every car that went by and whatnot. Kind of edgy, always feeling on edge.”

She says the assault happened in 2018 when she was just 14 years old. Now 19, she is married with a baby.

“I don’t like to be alone with any man. besides my husband,” she said. “Like, not even family. I’d still not be comfortable at all.”

She’s relieved she doesn’t have to go through a trial, but Meckley’s plea is cold comfort.

“He said that he took the plea hearing to make it easier on me and the other victims, but what good does that do us now,” she said. “He didn’t do anything to make anything easier before. He’s the one that started all of it. We have to live with it.”

Meckley will be sentenced Aug. 31.

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