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Case CaptionCase No.Topics and IssuesAuthorCitation / CountyDecidedPostedWebCite
State v. Dunn 2023-CA-24When the complaining witness failed to appear for trial, the trial court found that the forfeiture by wrongdoing exception to the hearsay rule applied to the use of her prior statements at trial, because appellant had sent a threatening letter to her from jail and had had repeated contact with her by phone notwithstanding a no-contact order. Appellant waived any argument that the trial court erred in finding forfeiture by wrongdoing by subsequently entering a guilty plea to intimidation. Ineffective assistance of counsel is not demonstrated in defense counsel’s alleged failure to advise appellant to plead no contest, and the record reflects that the trial court substantially complied with Crim.R. 11 in accepting appellant’s guilty plea. Judgment affirmed.HuffmanClark 2/16/2024 2/16/2024 2024-Ohio-600
State v. Dehart 2023-CA-8In response to a knock on the driver’s side window of his parked car, appellant opened his door and conversed with a sheriff’s deputy who requested and received consent to search the vehicle. Given that appellant authorized the deputy to search the car during a consensual encounter, no Fourth Amendment violation occurred. Judgment affirmed.WelbaumDarke 2/16/2024 2/16/2024 2024-Ohio-599
In re A.A.R. 2023-CA-39 & 2023-CA-40The trial court did not abuse its discretion in awarding legal custody of three children to their uncle in Arizona. Mother and Father failed to complete their case plan objectives, which included addressing mental health, drug use, and parenting issues, and granting legal custody to the uncle was in the best interest of the children. Judgments affirmed.HuffmanGreene 2/16/2024 2/16/2024 2024-Ohio-601
State v. Akins 29619A trial court’s failure to inform appellant that a jury verdict must be unanimous to convict him did not render appellant’s guilty plea less than knowing, intelligent, and voluntary. Judgment affirmed.LewisMontgomery 2/16/2024 2/16/2024 2024-Ohio-598
State v. Jennings 29895The traffic stop of the vehicle in which appellant was a passenger was not prolonged to allow for a canine air sniff, and the dog’s alert to the presence of drugs provided probable cause for the vehicle to be searched. The trial court did not err in overruling appellant’s motion to suppress. The record establishes that appellant’s no contest plea was knowing, intelligent, and voluntary. Because appellant was sentenced to a term of community control sanctions, the trial court did not err by not including a jail-time credit calculation in the judgment entry. Judgment affirmed.TuckerMontgomery 2/16/2024 2/16/2024 2024-Ohio-602
State v. Pitts 29649The trial court did not err by ordering appellant to register as an arson offender. The registry does not violate the separation of powers doctrine. Judgment affirmed.EpleyMontgomery 2/16/2024 2/16/2024 2024-Ohio-603
Haught v. Kettering 29864The trial court did not err in granting summary judgment against appellant, who sought injunctive relief against a municipality. Appellant did not appeal from notices and orders concerning property violations and therefore failed to exhaust his administrative remedies before resorting to the common pleas court. As a result, appellant’s claim was precluded. For the same reasons, appellant failed to show a substantial likelihood of success on the merits. Judgment affirmed.WelbaumMontgomery 2/9/2024 2/9/2024 2024-Ohio-479
State v. Lauderdale 29753Appellant’s conviction for gross sexual imposition was supported by sufficient evidence. The trial court did not commit plain error by failing to give a curative jury instruction after appellant’s mother engaged in disruptive behavior in the gallery and after the victim had an emotional outburst while testifying. Appellant’s trial counsel was not ineffective for failing to move for a mistrial or, alternatively, a curative jury instruction after the jury observed the disruptive behavior of appellants’ mother and the victim’s emotional outburst. The State did not engage in prosecutorial misconduct by referring to the victim’s emotional outburst during its closing argument. The trial court did not abuse its discretion by overruling appellant’s post-verdict motion for new trial without holding a hearing or reviewing the medical records that were at issue in the motion. Judgment affirmed.WelbaumMontgomery 2/9/2024 2/9/2024 2024-Ohio-481
McGinnis v. Conley 29871Even assuming that appellees failed to give timely written notice of their exercise of a real-estate purchase option, that failure did not terminate the parties’ option-to-purchase agreement. Appellants breached the agreement by declaring the option terminated and by refusing to sell the property to appellees at the agreed price. Although appellees often paid their rent during a five-day grace period and twice paid after the grace period, appellants never declared the lease void and did not purport to terminate the option-to-purchase agreement on the basis of delinquent payments. Appellants waived any argument about the option-to-purchase agreement lacking consideration by failing to raise the issue at trial. Finally, a defective or missing acknowledgement does not affect the validity of a real-estate transaction in the absence of fraud. Judgment affirmed.TuckerMontgomery 2/9/2024 2/9/2024 2024-Ohio-482
Rajkumari v. Damke 29812The trial court’s denial of appellant’s petition for a civil stalking order was not against the manifest weight of the evidence. Judgment affirmed.TuckerMontgomery 2/9/2024 2/9/2024 2024-Ohio-483
State v. Walker 29729The trial court did not err in overruling appellant’s motion to suppress where the search warrant at issue was supported by probable cause. Appellant’s convictions for having weapons while under disability were supported by sufficient evidence and were not against the manifest weight of the evidence. Trial counsel was not ineffective for failing to present a separate closing argument for the bench trial portion of the case after giving a closing argument during the jury trial portion of the case. Trial counsel also was not ineffective in declining to present additional mitigating evidence at sentencing. Finally, the trial court did not err in imposing consecutive sentences. Judgment affirmed.LewisMontgomery 2/9/2024 2/9/2024 2024-Ohio-484
In re D.P. 2023-CA-33, 2023-CA-36, 2023-CA-37, 2023-CA-38, 2023-CA-41The juvenile court’s grant of permanent custody to Children Services was supported by sufficient evidence and the weight of the evidence. Judgments affirmed.EpleyGreene 2/9/2024 2/9/2024 2024-Ohio-480
State v. Young 2023-CA-45The trial court did not err in finding that the offense of attempted aggravated assault is an offense of violence, thus permitting the court to impose a prison sentence. The trial court properly considered the purposes and principles of sentencing and the seriousness and recidivism factors in sentencing appellant to a prison term. Judgment affirmed.HuffmanGreene 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-367
Fabian v. Kettering 29848The trial court erred in granting appellees’ Civ.R. 12(C) motion for judgment on the pleadings on all counts; after consideration of res judicata and immunity, there remained one viable claim. However, because appellant did not respond to the motion for judgment on the pleadings and did not raise any issues for the trial court to consider, he waived any potential errors that could have been brought to the trial court’s attention. We decline to find plain error on the trial court’s part for dismissing the case for want of prosecution. Judgment affirmed. (Welbaum, J., dissenting.)EpleyMontgomery 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-360
State v. Greene 29836 & 29837The trial court was not required to make consecutive sentence findings under R.C. 2929.14(C)(4) when it revoked appellant’s community control sanctions and imposed consecutive prison sentences. Appellant had previously agreed to consecutive sentences in the event of revocation and was bound by his agreement. Appellants’ sentences, therefore, are not subject to review on appeal under R.C. 2953.08(D)(1). Judgments affirmed. (Epley, P.J., concurring in judgment only.)WelbaumMontgomery 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-363
Townsend v. Kettering 29853The trial court did not abuse its discretion in dismissing appellant’s case for lack of prosecution. The litigation’s history indicates that appellant was dilatory in conducting discovery, failed to comply with court deadlines, and had received a number of continuances. Appellant’s last-minute attempts to delay trial, including filing a frivolous appeal, also displayed disregard for the court system. In addition, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to continue the trial date. Under established factors governing evaluation of continuances, no factors weighed in appellant’s favor. Judgment affirmed.WelbaumMontgomery 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-365
Warman v. Select Auto 29839The trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying appellant-car dealership’s motion to set aside the default judgment on liability and to file its answer out of time. In calculating the amount of appellee-car buyer’s damages, the trial court reasonably used a subsequent appraisal value, as offered by appellee, as the actual value at the time of the sale. However, the trial court erred in its calculation of actual damages by using the total cost of the vehicle, including finance charges and other costs, as the vehicle’s represented value. Judgment affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded for recalculation of actual and treble/punitive damages.LewisMontgomery 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-366
State v. Fowler 2022-CA-28The trial court did not err by failing to suppress appellant’s statements to detectives where appellant validly waived his Miranda rights and where appellant’s statements were not the product of impermissible, coercive police conduct. In addition, the trial court properly admitted certain records from Google at trial as self-authenticating documents under Evid.R. 902(11). Because the Google records were not testimonial in nature, their admission did not violate appellant’s right of confrontation. Judgment affirmed.WelbaumMiami 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-361
State v. Rumbaugh 2023-CA-8Appellant’s convictions for failure to stop after an accident and failure to maintain an assured clear distance ahead were supported by sufficient evidence and were not against the manifest weight of the evidence where an eyewitness identified appellant as the driver of the vehicle that crashed into the back of a stationary car on an exit ramp of an interstate and left the scene of the accident. Judgment affirmed.LewisMiami 2/2/2024 2/2/2024 2024-Ohio-364
Capital One, N.A. v. Howard 2023-CA-25The trial court did not err when it granted appellee’s motion for summary judgment. Appellee met its burden under Civ.R. 56 to demonstrate that no genuine issue of material fact existed to warrant a trial. Appellant did not respond to the motion, and hence did not meet his burden. Judgment affirmed.EpleyMiami 1/29/2024 1/31/2024 2024-Ohio-275
State v. Bennett 29669The trial court erred in concluding that appellant’s jury demand was untimely, when it was filed on or before the third day following appellant’s receipt of notice of the continued trial date, and in denying him a jury trial based on the untimeliness of the request. The Ohio Supreme Court has exclusive jurisdiction over a party’s request that a judge be removed from a case for bias, prejudice, or any other reason. As such, this court is without jurisdiction to rule upon appellant’s assertion that the trial judge should have recused herself from the case. Judgment reversed and remanded.TuckerMontgomery 1/26/2024 1/26/2024 2024-Ohio-274
Head v. Head 29846The trial court did not abuse its discretion by: (1) failing to award appellant a particular automobile; (2) failing to find appellee in contempt and liable for financial misconduct in connection with damage to the marital residence; (3) failing to let appellant question appellee about discrepancies in her income tax returns after she had asserted Fifth Amendment rights; (4) awarding sole custody of the parties’ children to appellee; or (5) awarding appellee the tax exemptions for the parties’ two minor children. The court did abuse its discretion by finding that appellee was not liable for one-half of a marital debt to the Internal Revenue Service. Contrary to the court’s finding, an eviction judgment appellee paid was not a premarital debt and was instead owed by both parties. Judgment affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded to the trial court for recalculation of the amounts each party will be credited against the IRS debt and the eviction judgment, with an order for reimbursement as needed.WelbaumMontgomery 1/26/2024 1/26/2024 2024-Ohio-276
U.S. Bank N.A. v. Clarke 2023-CA-29The trial court erred in granting summary judgment to appellee-mortgagee in a foreclosure action where mortgagee failed to establish that it had sent a notice of default to appellant-mortgagor. The record does not establish that the trial court erred by overruling mortgagor’s motion to enforce a settlement agreement where mortgagor was unable to make the payment required by the settlement agreement, the trial court rescinded the settlement agreement, the trial court reactivated the case on the active trial docket, and the case was then voluntarily dismissed without prejudice pursuant to Civ.R. 41. The record does not establish that the mortgagee failed to file its foreclosure action within the applicable statute of limitations. Judgment reversed and remanded.LewisGreene 1/26/2024 1/26/2024 2024-Ohio-278
State v. Said 2023-CA-2The trial court did not err in excluding appellant from a child’s witness competency hearing; the witness was presumed to be competent, no request to be present was made by appellant, and appellant’s counsel, who was present at the hearing, did not object to appellant’s absence. Appellant’s numerous claims of ineffective assistance of counsel are meritless and therefore, when considered together, do not demonstrate cumulative error. There was no error in sentencing appellant under the Reagan Tokes Act. Judgment affirmedHuffmanMiami 1/26/2024 1/26/2024 2024-Ohio-277
Skeens v. Gambill 2023-CA-24Appellant’s notice of appeal was timely despite being filed over 90 days after the date of the final judgment, because the clerk of court failed to serve appellant’s attorney with a copy of the judgment. Appellant was not permitted to file objections to the trial court’s judgment pursuant to Civ.R. 53, because the trial was conducted by an acting judge rather than a magistrate. The trial court’s judgment was not against the manifest weight of the evidence. Judgment affirmed.LewisMiami 1/19/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-176
State v. Adams 29855The trial court did not err in overruling appellant’s motion to suppress. The law enforcement officers had reasonable, articulable suspicion that appellant was under the influence and, as he got out of his vehicle, an officer observed drugs in plain view inside the vehicle. At that point, the officers had probable cause to search the vehicle. Judgment affirmed.HuffmanMontgomery 1/19/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-174
State v. Holbert 29704Conceded error. The trial court did not properly advise appellant pursuant to the Reagan Tokes Act and did not properly advise him about post-release control after finding him guilty of felonious assault. The State concedes the error. The judgment entry also erroneously states that appellant pled guilty instead of no contest. Judgment reversed in part and remanded for resentencing and correction of the judgment entry as to the nature of the plea. In all other respects, judgment affirmed.WelbaumMontgomery 1/19/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-175
Wilkinson v. Dayton 29841Appellant, as an estate administrator, filed wrongful death, survivorship, and related causes of action against two police officers who, in response to a domestic violence dispatch, did not arrest or otherwise take charge of the abuser; a short time after the officers left the home, the abuser fatally shot the domestic violence complainant and her daughter. The trial court did not err in dismissing appellant’s complaint under Civ.R. 12(B)(6). Appellant's petition for discovery was properly dismissed because the information sought was not available under either R.C. 2317.48 or Civ.R. 34(D). Appellant’s common law wrongful death and survivorship claims were properly dismissed because, under the facts set forth in the amended complaint, the appellee-officers did not have a special relationship with the decedents or any statutory mandate to arrest or otherwise take charge of the person who murdered them; as such, as a matter of law, appellant could not establish the duty element of the wrongful death and survivorship claims. The amended complaint also asserted a cause of action under R.C. 2307.60, which allows a crime victim to pursue a cause of action against the perpetrator for the damages caused by the crime, alleging that the police officers were guilty of criminal conduct - dereliction of duty - under R.C. 2921.44(E). The trial court correctly dismissed this claim because R.C. 2921.44(E) requires the duty to act, and appellant did not articulate an express duty imposed upon the officers to arrest or otherwise take charge of the individual who murdered the decedents. Appellant’s argument that the officers had a duty under R.C. 2921.44(A) is waived because she did not raise it in the trial court. Finally, the trial court did not abuse its discretion by overruling appellant’s motion for leave to file a second amended complaint, because that complaint did not add any causes of action that were not included in the first amended complaint. Judgment affirmed.TuckerMontgomery 1/19/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-180
Timmons v. Hull 2023-CA-23The trial court erred in granting appellees’ motion for summary judgment where there remained a genuine issue of material fact as to whether appellants had made full payment for cattle purchased pursuant to an oral contract. Judgment reversed and remanded.LewisClark 1/19/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-178
State v. Stone 2023-CA-23Appellant’s conviction for attempted trespass in a habitation when a person is present or likely to be present was based on sufficient evidence; the evidence established that appellant acted knowingly and used stealth and force. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in precluding defense counsel from asking certain proffered questions of a responding sheriff’s deputy; the questions were not relevant, asked for hearsay, and were not based on a proper foundation. The trial court did not err in failing to provide a jury instruction on criminal trespass as a lesser included offense. Judgment affirmed.EpleyGreene 1/19/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-177
Surber v. Hines 2023-CA-17The trial court did not err in entering summary judgment against appellant on his claim that Greenville Township Board of Zoning Appeals members violated Ohio’s Open Meetings Act by privately discussing his appeal immediately before conducting a hearing. Any pre-hearing discussion constituted deliberation in a quasi-judicial proceeding to which the legislation did not apply. Judgment affirmed.TuckerDarke 1/12/2024 1/12/2024 2024-Ohio-95
State v. McWilliams 2023-CA-16State’s appeal. The trial court erred as a matter of law in failing to consider whether R.C. 2901.12(H)(3) permitted the State to pursue charges in Champaign County based on an alleged course of criminal conduct involving some offenses that arose in Champaign County and another offense that did not occur in Champaign County. Nevertheless, our decision has no impact on the defendant’s final judgment of acquittal, as he cannot be placed twice in jeopardy.LewisChampaign 1/12/2024 1/12/2024 2024-Ohio-97
State v. McCoy 2023-CA-11The trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying appellant’s motion for a competency evaluation. In addition, the indefinite prison term imposed by the trial court for appellant’s second-degree felony aggravated possession of drugs offense is not contrary to law. Judgment affirmed.WelbaumChampaign 1/12/2024 1/12/2024 2024-Ohio-98
Doe v. Cedarville Univ. 29875The trial court did not abuse its discretion in overruling appellant’s motion to proceed under a pseudonym where the court weighed the relevant factors and concluded that appellant had failed to show that her privacy interest substantially outweighed the presumption of open judicial proceedings. Judgment affirmed.LewisMontgomery 1/12/2024 1/12/2024 2024-Ohio-100
State v. Harris 29780Appellant’s conviction for trafficking in cocaine was supported by sufficient evidence and was not against the manifest weight of the evidence. Appellant failed to demonstrate ineffective assistance of counsel. Judgment affirmed.HuffmanMontgomery 1/12/2024 1/12/2024 2024-Ohio-99
State v. Wilcox 2013-CA-94A motion for delayed appeal may not be used as a means to pursue successive appeals; an appellant who has pursued a direct appeal is not entitled to a second appeal by way of a delayed appeal. Insofar as the substance of appellant’s motion might more accurately be characterized as an application for reopening, the application is untimely, and appellant did not show good cause for the untimeliness. Motion for delayed appeal overruled; application for reopening denied.Per curiamClark 1/9/2024 1/19/2024 2024-Ohio-179
State v. Gronbeck 2023-CA-68The trial court’s overruling of non-party appellants’ motion to quash and objections to defendant’s subpoenas is not a final, appealable order because (1) no records were ordered disclosed to the defendant and (2) the trial court has scheduled an in-camera review to determine which records, if any, should be disclosed. Under these circumstances, the overruling of the motion to quash and the objections neither determined the action with respect to the subpoenas nor prevented a judgment in appellants’ favor, as required for a final order under R.C. 2505.02(B)(4). Appeal dismissed for lack of a final, appealable order.TuckerGreene 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-26
State v. Worthan 29938State’s appeal. The trial court did not err in sustaining appellee’s motion to suppress cell-phone data obtained pursuant to a search warrant issued by a local municipal court and served on AT&T’s legal-compliance office in North Palm Beach, Florida. The trial court correctly held that the municipal court lacked authority to issue a warrant to be executed outside of its territorial jurisdiction. Judgment affirmed.TuckerMontgomery 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-21
State v. Moreland 29724The trial court did not err in designating the State’s firearms witness as an expert in muzzle-to-target distance determinations. The jury’s verdicts were supported by legally sufficient evidence and were not against the manifest weight of the evidence. The trial court did not err in precluding appellant from introducing evidence of the victim’s alleged prior violent tendencies. Appellant has not demonstrated that juror misconduct led to improper verdicts. Judgment affirmed.TuckerMontgomery 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-22
State v. Manns 29882The trial court did not err in overruling appellant’s motion to suppress. Under the totality of the circumstances, the traffic stop of a vehicle in which appellant was a passenger was reasonable, and the use of a canine unit did not unnecessarily prolong the stop; the officer had been diligently engaged in completing the traffic citation when the dog arrived within 15 minutes of the stop. Reasonable suspicion was not required to support appellant’s removal from the vehicle. Judgment affirmed.HuffmanMontgomery 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-23
Ladd v. Planchak 29830A co-venturer was not precluded from maintaining a breach of contract action against another co-venturer prior to an accounting or settlement of the joint venture. The trial court did not err in applying partnership law, which applies to joint ventures and allows actions to be brought without an accounting. The court correctly instructed the jury that a co-venturer must give notice of withdrawal before a joint venture may be terminated, and no notice was given here. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in precluding appellant’s accountant from testifying as to issues that had already been decided in a prior action between the parties or as to legal opinions and irrelevant matters. Appellant waived any issue concerning answers to jury interrogatories by failing to raise this before the jury was discharged. Finally, the court did not err in refusing to grant appellant’s motion for an order requiring the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) to produce appellees’ tax returns. Appellees had provided the needed signed forms on two occasions, but the IRS did not respond to requests that the returns be produced. The trial court correctly concluded that it could not order the IRS to comply. Moreover, appellant received copies of the tax returns from appellees’ tax preparer, who verified that the returns were copies of the returns filed with the IRS. Judgments affirmed.WelbaumMontgomery 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-24
In re D.L.L. 29883The juvenile court did not abuse its discretion in failing to find Father in contempt for not notifying Mother of an isolated change in his work schedule during which he left the parties’ minor child in the care of relatives. The juvenile court further did not abuse its discretion by failing to find Father in contempt for allegedly consuming alcohol within 24 hours of picking up the parties’ minor child. Judgment affirmed.HuffmanMontgomery 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-25
State v. Boggess 29775Appellant’s conviction for violating a protection order was based on sufficient evidence that he sent a text message to the victim from a phone number other than his own. Judgment affirmed.EpleyMontgomery 1/5/2024 1/5/2024 2024-Ohio-27