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CLEVELAND (WJW) — A former Pepper Pike rabbi has admitted to attempting to meet a teen for sex, when he was caught in an undercover sex sting.
Stephen Weiss, 61, of Pepper Pike, on Thursday entered guilty pleas on felony counts of attempted unlawful sexual conduct with a minor and possessing criminal tools in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court. A third count of importuning was dismissed.
Weiss was the longtime rabbi at B’nai Jeshurun Congregation in Pepper Pike. He resigned in April, days after his charges in an undercover sex sting came to light. He was indicted in June, court records show.
Prosecutors said Weiss had online conversations with an undercover officer who was posing as a 15-year-old that were explicit. He then arranged a meet-up for sex, where he was arrested by officers with the Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. Investigators said they found a box of condoms in his vehicle.
Weiss is set for sentencing at noon on Feb. 27. He has been free on a $50,000 bond.
Weiss is expected to be registered as a Tier II sex offender. In Ohio, Tier II sex offenders must check in with authorities every 180 days for 25 years, according to the Ohio Attorney General’s Office.