Saturday, August 20, 2011

Failure to Notify Conviction Reduced (8 20 11)

A defendant was convicted of rape in 2004 when Megan’s Law was in effect. Since then the General Assembly passed the Adam Walsh Act (AWA) which drastically increased the burdens on convicted sex offenders. The Ohio Supreme Court decided in Bodyke that it was unconstitutional to impose the AWA restrictions on those sentenced when Megan’s Law was in effect. This defendant failed to make notification of his change of address which would be a crime under Megan’s Law or the AWA. He was convicted of a first degree felony under the AWA but the Second District Court of Appeals reversed that conviction and remanded the case for re-sentencing as a third degree felony since failure to notify was a third degree felony under Megan’s Law. State v. Alexander, 2011-Ohio-4015.

Contact me if you need a Dayton Criminal Lawyer for your appeal or other post-conviction matter by going to my Web site www.robertalanbrenner.com and filling in the "contact me" form. Visit www.ohiocriminaltriallawyer.com if you need an experienced Dayton Criminal Defense Lawyer to represent you in the trial court.


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Harmless typographical error or improper amendment to a charged offense? (8 7 2011)

Ohio Criminal Rule 7(D) allows a trial judge to amend a complaint "provided no change is made in the name or identity of the crime charged."

Edward Madding was charged by complaint with Resisting Arrest in violation of R.C. 2921.33(A)(1) but the language of the complaint indicated he was being charged with a violation of R.C. 2921.33(B). R.C. 2921.33(A) is a second-degree misdemeanor, but Madding was charged with a first-degree misdemeanor and (B) is a first-degree misdemeanor. It appears the only thing wrong with the complaint was that it said (A)(1) instead of (B).

At the end of the trial, Madding’s Dayton Criminal Defense Lawyer argued that Madding could only be convicted of R.C. 2921.33(A) which is a second-degree misdemeanor. In response, the prosecutor made a motion to amend the complaint to reflect a violation of R.C. 2921.33(B) (a first-degree misdemeanor) instead of R.C. 2921.33(A). Defense counsel objected and appealed.

Two Judges on the Second District Court of Appeals for Montgomery County decided that this was a case of a trial judge fixing "a simple typographical error which neither misleads nor prejudices the defendant." The third judge dissented and wrote that the charged offense, R.C. 2921.33 was a second-degree misdemeanor and it was error to allow the amendment of the offense to R.C. 2921.33(B) because the change raised the degree and therefore the identity of the offense. State v. Madding, 2011-Ohio-3865.

Contact me if you need a Dayton Criminal Defense Lawyer for your appeal or other post-conviction matter by going to my Web site www.robertalanbrenner.com and filling in the "contact me" form.  Visit www.ohiocriminaltriallawyer.com if you need an experienced Dayton Criminal Defense Lawyer to represent you in the trial court.
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