brandon_rhodes.jpgMOUNT GILEAD, Ohio (AP) _ A man and a teenager are accused of burning a cross bearing racial slurs in a black family's yard in central Ohio.

Both suspects are white.

Morrow County Prosecutor Charles Howland said Friday that 20-year-old Brandon Rhodes, of rural Marengo, pleaded not guilty to five counts each of ethnic intimidation and aggravated menacing.

Authorities say a teen is charged with similar counts in juvenile court. His name and the specific charges were not released.

Sheriff's Detective Marissa Hurst says a slightly burned, 6-foot-tall (1.8-meter-tall) cross bearing racial slurs and the phrase “KKK will make you pay,'' referring to the white supremacist group the Ku Klux Klan, was found March 3 in the family's yard in Marengo.

Authorities would not comment on a possible motive.

Rhodes' attorney, John Sayre, did not immediately return calls seeking comment.