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Case CaptionCase No.Topics and IssuesAuthorCitation / CountyDecidedPostedWebCite
State v. Durgan C-170148CONSTITUTIONAL LAW/CRIMINAL – MIRANDA – APPELLATE REVIEW/CRIMINAL – BATSON – COUNSEL: Where police believed defendant to be a witness to a murder and drove him to the police station in an unmarked car without restraints, defendant appeared eager to help and provided information voluntarily, and police drove him back to the scene of the crime to pick up his truck, defendant was not in custody, and no Miranda warnings were required. Where defendant was interviewed several days after the murder, came voluntarily in his own truck to the police station, was not handcuffed or searched, and provided more information on who may have wished to harm the victim, defendant was not in custody, and no Miranda warnings were required even though the police had suspicions about defendant and used the opportunity to put a GPS device on his car. The totality of the circumstances showed that defendant voluntarily waived his Miranda rights and made statements to the police where, even though the interrogation was lengthy, defendant was allowed to use the restroom and was given food, and defendant never stated that he did not wish to talk to the police, that he wanted to leave, or that he wanted a lawyer, and he never confessed to killing the victim. In reviewing the trial court’s ruling on a motion to suppress, the appellate court may only consider evidence presented at the suppression hearing. The trial court’s acceptance of the prosecutor’s race-neutral reasons to excuse two African-American prospective jurors was not clearly erroneous where the first prospective juror stated that he had a pending theft charge and did not feel be was being treated fairly by the justice system and the second prospective juror said his religion would not permit him to sign a guilty verdict and that he worked at the same company as defense counsel’s wife. Defendant was not denied the effective assistance of counsel where his counsel did not present expert testimony on police interrogation techniques and false confessions, because the decision not to call an expert witness is a matter of trial strategy, and counsel extensively cross-examined the lead detective about interrogation techniques.DetersHamilton 6/15/2018 6/15/2018 2018-Ohio-2310
Village of Evendale v. Lindsey C-170455CRIMINAL MISCELLANEOUS – JURISDICTION – R.C. 1905.032: Where the mayor’s court failed to certify the case upon transfer to the municipal court as required by R.C. 1905.032(B)(1), the municipal court lacked jurisdiction over it.DetersHamilton 6/15/2018 6/15/2018 2018-Ohio-2311
Dixon v. Anderson C-170418REAL PROPERTY/LANDLORD AND TENANT – FORCIBLE ENTRY AND DETAINER: In a forcible-entry-and-detainer action, the trial court erred in issuing a writ of restitution where the tenant had vacated the leased premises prior to issuance of the writ.DetersHamilton 6/15/2018 6/15/2018 2018-Ohio-2312
State v. Embry C-170101SEX OFFENSES – CLASSIFICATION – REGISTRATION – NOTIFICATION: Where the trial court correctly classified defendant as a Tier II sex offender under the Adam Walsh Act, but the notice form given to defendant was blank where it indicates whether defendant is a sex offender or child-victim offender, the boxes on the form that indicate defendant’s tier classification were left blank, and the boxes that indicate the duration and frequency of defendant’s registration duties were left blank, and where the trial court did not inform defendant that she had to register with the sheriff or orally provide any of the R.C. 2950.03(B) notifications, the trial court failed to provide defendant with the required notice of her registration duties, and the cause must be remanded for the trial court to correctly notify defendant of her Tier II registration and verification duties and their duration. [See CONCURRENCE: The only error committed by the trial court was failing to check the appropriate boxes on the notification form.]MillerHamilton 6/8/2018 6/8/2018 2018-Ohio-2204
State v. Furr C-170046CONSTITUTIONAL LAW/CRIMINAL – RIGHT TO COUNSEL – WAIVER – DUE PROCESS – JAIL CLOTHES: Defendant’s waiver of trial counsel was valid where the trial court made a sufficient inquiry to determine whether defendant fully understood and intelligently relinquished his constitutional right to counsel with respect to a prosecution for burglary and possessing criminal tools, defendant clearly and unequivocally asserted his right to represent himself on multiple occasion, and the court warned of the disadvantages of proceeding without counsel, explained that defendant would be required to follow the rules of procedure and evidence, and thoroughly explained the nature and elements of the charges, possible defenses to the charges, and the potential sentences that defendant faced. Defendant failed to demonstrate that his constitutional right to due process was violated when he stood trial before a jury while dressed in identifiable jail clothes where the trial court informed defendant of the option of wearing civilian clothes, defendant failed to object to being tried in jail clothes, and the court told the jurors to disregard the fact that defendant was wearing jail clothes.MyersHamilton 6/8/2018 6/8/2018 2018-Ohio-2205
In re D.C. C-170089CHILDREN – DELINQUENCY – JURISDICTION: Where the juvenile court failed to independently adjudicate the juvenile delinquent, the dispositional order was not final; therefore, the juvenile’s appeal from the dispositional order must be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction.DetersHamilton 6/8/2018 6/8/2018 2018-Ohio-2206
First World Architects Studio, PSC v. McGhee C-170284FEDERAL PREEMPTION – COPYRIGHT: The trial court did not err by dismissing for lack of subject- matter jurisdiction a copyright holder’s complaint alleging the infringement of its copyrights in architectural drawings, because the copyright holder did not allege a breach-of-contract claim falling outside the subject matter of copyright law, and the copyright holder’s infringement claims fell within the exclusive jurisdiction of the federal courts and were preempted, even though the copyright holder did not register its architectural drawings.CunninghamHamilton 6/6/2018 6/6/2018 2018-Ohio-2158
State v. Bullucks C-170220SPEEDY TRIAL — INSTRUCTIONS — RAPE — FELONIOUS ASSAULT: Defendant was not denied his Sixth Amendment right to the effective assistance of counsel by defense counsel’s failure to move to dismiss on speedy-trial grounds his rape and felonious assault charges: defendant, who had been held in jail without bail, was brought to trial within the 90 days required by R.C. 2945.71 et seq., because defense counsel had signed two of the three continuance entries, each entry contained an asterisk next the signature line with the words, “Defense counsel waives all speedy trial rights in accord with R.C. 2945.71 et seq.,” and with those continuances, only 47 days chargeable to the state had elapsed from the date of defendant’s arrest through the trial date. The trial court did not commit plain error by returning the jury to its deliberations without giving the instruction set forth in State v. Howard, 42 Ohio St.3d 18, 537 N.E.2d 188 (1989), after the jury had indicated it was deadlocked four hours into its deliberations; nor did the court abuse its discretion by giving the Howard charge over defendant’s objection, or by failing to declare a mistrial, after the jury had reported that it was deadlocked a second time, because the jury’s submission of an additional question showed that it had remained engaged in reviewing the evidence related to the rape counts, and because the jury reached a unanimous verdict the following day. The jury’s verdicts finding defendant guilty of the forceful vaginal rape of a 15-year-old girl and the felonious assault of her stepmother were not contrary to the manifest weight of the evidence: the rape victim testified that defendant had forced her to engage in vaginal sex, her DNA was found on defendant’s penis, and the victim had sustained a tear and abrasion to her cervix consistent with a penetrating trauma; and the assault victim testified that defendant had choked, punched, bitten, and stabbed her, and her testimony was corroborated by photographs and her medical and dental records.MockHamilton 6/6/2018 6/6/2018 2018-Ohio-2159
State v. Jeffries C-170182CONSTITUTIONAL LAW/CRIMINAL – SEX OFFENSES – RAPE – GROSS SEXUAL IMPOSITION – EVIDENCE – RAPE-SHIELD STATUTE – JOINDER – COUNSEL – SENTENCING – CONSECUTIVE SENTENCES: Ohio’s rape-shield statute, R.C. 2907.02, prohibits evidence of the victim’s nonconsensual sexual activity, unless that evidence falls under a specific exception for admission, such as to show the origin of a disease, and the evidence is both material to a fact at issue and its probative value is not outweighed by its inflammatory or prejudicial nature. In a trial that included charges involving the defendant’s sexual abuse of his daughter, the trial court did not err by excluding evidence of the daughter’s prior nonconsensual sexual activity with another perpetrator that led to her contraction of a genital medical condition, because how the victim contracted the condition was not material to a fact at issue with respect to the offenses charged, and because the exclusion of the irrelevant evidence did not infringe on the defendant’s constitutional rights to confront witnesses and present a defense. Under Crim.R. 8(A), it was proper to charge in the same indictment the offense of aggravated drug trafficking, which included the element that it had occurred in the vicinity of a juvenile, and sex offenses against the defendant’s juvenile daughter, because the facts showed the offenses charged were “part of a course of criminal conduct”: the drug offense occurred around the same time and at the same location—the defendant’s home—as one of the sex offenses, the evidence was interrelated because the daughter provided testimony establishing the juvenile-vicinity element of the drug offense, and the offenses were investigated at the same time, resulting in additional overlapping witnesses. The trial court did not abuse its discretion by refusing to sever a drug offense from sex offenses where the evidence for each count was sufficiently separate and distinct such that the jury, as instructed, could separate and analyze the proof of each offense independently, as evinced by an acquittal on one count in the case. The defendant’s conviction for the aggravated trafficking of oxycodone in an amount equaling or exceeding bulk was supported by sufficient evidence and not against the manifest weight of the evidence where the evidence showed that the defendant obtained at least 85 Percocet pills containing oxycodone, put a few in a container marked “personal,” and put the rest aside in two other containers with the intent that those pills would be sold and either crushed for regular customers who kept snorting straws in the defendant’s home, or placed in one of the miniature zip-lock like bags recovered with the pills in the defendant’s laundry basket. The defendant’s convictions for sex offenses against his daughter, including rape and gross sexual imposition, were supported by sufficient evidence and not against the manifest weight of the evidence, even though the state did not present DNA test results to corroborate his daughter’s testimony, where the daughter’s testimony was unequivocal, detailed, and credible, and bolstered by other evidence, including incriminating text messages from the defendant. The defendant failed to demonstrate that defense counsel was ineffective for not presenting an expert witness to testify about DNA test results of items recovered from the rape victim’s room, and for not hiring an expert to examine those items, because there is nothing in the record from which the court can determine that such testimony or additional testing would have been favorable to the defendant and outcome determinative. The trial court did not err by ordering that the defendant serve his sentence for a drug offense consecutively to sex-offense sentences where the trial court made the appropriate R.C. 2929.14(C)(4) findings at the sentencing hearing and included those findings in the sentencing entry.CunninghamHamilton 6/6/2018 6/6/2018 2018-Ohio-2160
In re D.L. C-170152; C-170153; C-170154JUVENILE – GUN SPECIFICATIONS – R.C. 2152.17 – COUNSEL – CONSTITUTIONAL LAW/CRIMINAL – DOUBLE JEOPARDY – EQUAL PROTECTION: The juvenile court did not err in imposing, and counsel was not ineffective in failing to challenge the constitutionality of, multiple, cumulative commitments for firearm specifications to underlying felonies committed as part of the same transaction: the commitments were permitted under R.C. 2152.17; and the statute did not violate rights secured by the United States Constitution under the Double Jeopardy Clause of the Fifth Amendment, because firearm specifications are sentencing enhancements, not offenses, or under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, because the statute is rationally related to a legitimate governmental purpose.ZayasHamilton 6/6/2018 6/6/2018 2018-Ohio-2161