Fifth District Summary for 9/26/11

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State v. Daniels: This case arises out of Strasbourg in Tuscarawas County. John Daniels met a young girl at the Ramada Limited, had inappropriate sexual contact with the 15-year-old girl, and then took her back to his room. Luckily, a hotel employee could tell something was wrong and made a call to Police. I’ll spare you the details because trust me, you don’t want to know what was discussed on the record. Soon a Patrolman arrived to find Daniels answer his hotel room door naked. Daniels was convicted of one count of unlawful sexual conduct and one count of sexual imposition. He appealed his conviction on several errors. He claimed that there was insufficient evidence, that the offenses merged for the purpose of sentencing, the verdict was against the manifest weight of the evidence, and that trial counsel’s failure to raise the issue of merging offenses constituted ineffective assistance of counsel. The Court didn’t buy any of his arguments but did leave us with one comforting reminder: A properly licensed criminal defense lawyer in Delaware is presumed competent. State v. Hamblin (1988), 37 Ohio St.3d 153, 524 N.E.2d 476.

State v. Gribbin: This case arises out of Tuscarawas County. Adam Gribbin appeals his conviction for child endangering, for which he was sentenced to 180 days. The record indicates he smacked his 16-month-old daughter because she was crying. His girlfriend Cassie testified that, when she asked why the child’s face was bloody, Gribbin stated that “she was crying for no reason so he gave her a reason to cry because she was crying for no reason.” That sounds like some solid parenting. Gribbin claims the conviction goes against the weight of the evidence and is not supported by sufficient evidence, specifically because the testimony from his girlfriend wasn’t credible. Unfortunately for Gribbin, the 5th District defers to the trial court and overrules both assignments of error.

Cook v. Bricker: “Get off my damn property, I’ll put a cap up your ass,” Bricker said as someone approached his property line. But don’t worry, the public is safe; he only owns 13 weapons. He sounds like a contender for the neighbor of the year. Like anyone else would have done, the appellee sought and received a civil protection order (“CPO”) on behalf of himself and his entire immediate family. Bricker now appeals the order mainly because the court told him he couldn’t have his guns or drink booze. Fair enough. The Court sidestepped the 2nd Amendment claim by saying that, due to the fact that the CPO was against the manifest weight of the evidence, the 2nd Amendment assignment of error was moot. Neighbor of the Year: 1, Anxious Neighbors, 0.

Demattio v. Director, ODJFS: This case also arises out of Tuscarawas County. Demattio was a medical equipment sales rep terminated for failing to enter business records related to and justifying reimbursed mileage driven. The ODJFS found that Demattio was terminated for just cause and thus, no unemployment would be given. Demattio appealed that decision arguing that it was against the manifest weight of the evidence. On this appeal, the Court says it’s very simple; evidence can show that Demattio was to enter records pertaining to sales calls made and didn’t, which is against company rules. Mileage reports were then entered for hundreds of miles driven with no record of any calls being made. This was an easy one for the Fifth District.

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