Milliken found guilty on all counts, will likely serve life behind bars for rape of children

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Eric Milliken (center) looks down as he hears the verdict read that he is found guilty on all criminal counts.

By Staff Report

An area man accused of sexually assaulting and raping two young girls will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

It took the jury less than an hour to convict Eric Milliken, a 48-year-old New Concord resident, on all six criminal counts.

At least one of the charges, rape of a child under the age of 10, carries a mandatory life sentence, meaning that Milliken should never be free to assault another child again.

Prosecutors say it was the bravery of the two young victims, willing to testify, that ensured the guilty verdict.

Milliken first made press back in late March of this year when he was reported as a missing person.

In testimony during the three-day trial, it was discovered that Milliken fled after he was notified by a Muskingum County Child Protective Services (CPS) worker that he was a person of interest in the sexual assault of a child.

When he took the stand, Milliken attempted to say he wasn’t told he was a suspect by the CPS employee, but his lies fell apart upon cross-examination by Assistant Muskingum County Prosecutor Gerald Anderson.

Between 2015 and 2016, Milliken sexually assaulted and raped two girls. Neither knew that the other had been one of his victims until after coming forward. Both described the pain and trauma Milliken inflicted on them.

Each girl testified to the jury, having to provide a painful account of what happened to them. The first victim, who was as young as six when the assaults occurred, cried and held the leash to a therapy dog as she went into graphic detail.

Her testimony was extremely powerful to the jury, visibility affecting many, and making at least one juror cry herself.

Many witnesses testified at the trial, including family members, law enforcement and investigators.

Anderson said that he was proud of the two victims, as well as the thorough investigation by the Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office and finally for the attentiveness and diligence by the jurors during the long and difficult case.

Following the verdict, Muskingum County Judge Kelly Cottrill ordered Milliken held without bond pending sentencing. He faces a mandatory life sentence in prison.

In an effort to protect the identity of both victims, details referencing specific testimony and certain background material have been withheld.