11th District Criminal Case Update

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A lighter load today with only one juvenile and three criminal decisions.  It’s a pretty run-of-the-mill group today.

State v. Finch, 2014-Ohio-1680
Finch hides a cell phone in the bathroom to record his step-daughter showering.  Her mother finds it.  Finch lands a second-degree felony and six years in prison.  He appeals the length of his sentence, arguing that the court didn’t take his mental illness into account.  One psychologist said he heard voices that told him to do it.  Another psychologist said it was just him wrestling with his conscience.  The judge did mention it, so that means he considered it, and that’s enough to uphold the sentence.  Wright, Cannon.  Grendell concurs in judgment only.

State v. Reyes, 2014-Ohio-1679
Two and a half years into his 30-year sentence for Rape, Reyes tried to withdraw his guilty plea.  The Court denied it without a hearing.  He filed a second motion and then appealed the first before the second was ruled on.  The second one can’t be considered on appeal yet, because it wasn’t ruled on.  As to the first – there is no showing of a manifest injustice.  Wright, Grendell, Rice.

State v. Floyd, 2014-Ohio-1676
Floyd was sentenced to 22 years for Aggravated Murder and Burglary with firearm specifications.  He filed his appeal pro se and four months past the 30-day deadline for filing an appeal.  The Court can take a late appeal if there’s a good reason.  Floyd says he wasn’t advised of that deadline or his rights to appeal, but he signed a written guilty plea that said, “I must file an appeal within thirty (30) days of my sentence.”  Appeal dismissed.  Grendell, Wright, Cannon.

In re: D.A., 2014-Ohio-1677
D.A., a juvenile, pled “true” (the juvenile court equivalent of “guilty”) to five counts of Rape.  The juvenile court gave him two years and classified him as a Tier III sex offender.  Classifying him as as sex offender wasn’t mandatory, so there are a number of factors the court has to weigh before labeling him.  The court didn’t address any of those factors, and the juvenile didn’t have a chance to respond to any of them, so it’s sent back to redo that part.  Wright, Cannon.  O’Toole concurs in judgment only.