Medina County Courthouse

Monday, August 26, 2013

Ninth District Decisions Released on August 5, 2013

State v. Watson, 2013-Ohio-3392 affirmed a conviction by the Medina County Common Pleas Court for two counts of drug trafficking. Mr. Watson argued that the trial court erred in imposing a maximum sentence. The Court of Appeals noted that the record on appeal did not include the presentence investigation report and that it was Watson's duty to make sure it was included in the record. It also noted that the sentence fell within the statutory scheme and therefore wasn't contrary to law. 

In his second assignment of error Watson argued that the trial court erred in including the phrase "within the vicinity of a juvenile" in the sentencing entry since the trial court had specifically found that the crime did not take place within the vicinity of a child. The Court of Appeals rejected that assignment since the trial court had stated on the record that it did not find beyond a reasonable doubt that the offense was committed within the vicinity of a juvenile and then proceeded to sentence him accordingly. Therefore any error was harmless. 

State v. Earl, 2013-Ohio-3391 affirmed the dismissal by the Lorain County Common Pleas Court of charges of passing bad checks and forgery. The State appealed raising two assignments of error. One was that the trial court erred in referring Mr. Earl to a pre-trial diversion program not established by the Lorain County Prosecuting Attorney and the second was that having such a program violated the separation of powers doctrine. Both arguments were rejected since the appellate court found that the record was not complete and therefore could not be reviewed. 

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