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State of Ohio v. Christian James Westfall

September 30, 2011

STATE OF OHIO APPELLEE
v.
CHRISTIAN JAMES WESTFALL APPELLANT



APPEAL FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS COUNTY OF LORAIN, OHIO CASE No. 09CR078884

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Belfance, Presiding Judge.

Cite as

State v. Westfall,

ss:

DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY

{¶1} Appellant, Christian Westfall, appeals his conviction from the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas. This Court affirms.

I.

{¶2} On the evening of May 11, 2008, Mr. Westfall was playing basketball with friends at the Homewood School in Lorain. Jeremy Gunter, the victim, arrived at the court with three acquaintances just prior to midnight. Mr. Westfall and one of his friends stopped playing basketball and approached the four that had just arrived. Mr. Westfall recognized Mr. Gunter and began to confront him. Mr. Gunter indicated to police that Mr. Westfall had confronted him about money and was rifling through his pockets looking for money. At some point during the confrontation, Mr. Westfall struck Mr. Gunter on the left side of his face. Mr. Gunter was driven home. When he arrived, his aunt called an ambulance, and he was taken first to Elyria Memorial Hospital and then to Metro Health Medical Center. Due to the blow from Mr. Westfall, Mr. Gunter suffered a fractured jaw and lost two teeth.

{¶3} In July 2009, Mr. Westfall was indicted on one count of aggravated robbery in violation of R.C. 2911.01(A)(3), a first-degree felony, and one count of felonious assault in violation of R.C. 2903.11(A)(1), a second-degree felony. Mr. Westfall waived his right to a jury trial, and the matter proceeded to a bench trial in November 2009. The State orally dismissed the aggravated burglary charge against Mr. Westfall and proceeded solely on the felonious assault charge. At the conclusion of the State's evidence, Mr. Westfall made a Crim.R. 29 motion to acquit. The trial court denied the motion. Mr. Westfall renewed his Crim.R. 29 motion at the end of his own case and again at the sentencing hearing. The trial court denied both motions. The judge rendered a verdict of guilty. The court subsequently imposed a sentence of three years probation, a $250 fine, and $2,772 in restitution to be paid to Mr. Gunter.

{¶4} Mr. Westfall now appeals, presenting two assignments of error for our review.

II.

ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR I

"APPELLANT'S RIGHTS UNDER ARTICLE I, SECTION 16 OF THE OHIO CONSTITUTION AND THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION WERE VIOLATED AND HE WAS ...


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