A man who gave illegal tattoos to two middle school students in his Scarborough motel room last year will spend the next three years in prison after pleading guilty to the tattoo offenses and related sex and drug charges.

Joshua Grant, 36, was charged after police were notified he had tattooed two 14-year-old girls last March in the room where he was living at The Downeaster Motel on Route 1. Grant was indicted last year.

It is illegal to tattoo anyone under the age of 18 in Maine. Tattoo artists must be licensed by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, but Grant was not licensed, according to police.

Grant pleaded guilty Friday in Cumberland County Unified Court to unlawful sexual contact and two counts each of aggravated furnishing of scheduled drugs, placing a tattoo on a person under 18, tattooing without a license and possession of sexually explicit materials. He was sentenced to five years in prison with all but three years suspended, and two years of probation.

Grant will be required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life and was ordered to pay restitution, Scarborough police said.

When he was charged in March, Scarborough police said Grant invited the Westbrook Middle School students to his room to be tattooed. Police learned the girls had been tattooed after they were notified by a school guidance counselor.

Grant had corresponded with the girls online when they expressed an interest in getting tattoos. He picked them up at a convenience store and drove them in a tractor-trailer truck rig to his motel room, according to police.

Gillian Graham can be contacted at 791-6315 or at:

ggraham@pressherald.com

Twitter: @grahamgillian