Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

State of Ohio v. John Stephens

October 28, 2011

STATE OF OHIO PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT
v.
JOHN STEPHENS
DEFENDANT-APPELLEE



(Criminal Appeal from Municipal Court) T.C. CASE NO. 08CRB12173

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Grady, P.J.:

Cite as State v. Stephens,

OPINION

{¶1} The State of Ohio appeals from a judgment of the Dayton Municipal Court that granted Defendant John Stephen's application to seal the record of his misdemeanor criminal conviction pursuant to R.C. 2953.32.

{¶2} On September 18, 2008, Defendant entered a plea of guilty to one count of public indecency in violation of R.C. 2907.09(A)(3), a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. The trial court immediately sentenced Defendant to a period of supervised probation. On September 10, 2009, the trial court filed an Entry discharging Defendant from supervised probation.

{¶3} On January 5, 2011, Defendant filed a pro se application to seal the record of his misdemeanor public indecency conviction pursuant to R.C. 2953.32. At the initial hearing held on April 8, 2011, both the State and the court's own Probation Department objected to sealing the record of Defendant's public indecency conviction because Defendant is not a first offender, having been previously convicted on or about July 23, 2008, of disorderly conduct, a fourth degree misdemeanor, in Fairborn Municipal Court Case No. 08CRB1185.

{¶4} The trial court held a full evidentiary hearing on Defendant's application for expungement on May 16, 2011.

Defendant admitted that he had been previously convicted in July 2008 of disorderly conduct in Fairborn Municipal Court. Nevertheless, immediately following the hearing, the trial court filed its Judgment Entry granting Defendant's application to seal the record of his public indecency conviction. The court concluded that Defendant had made a compelling argument of undue hardship.

{¶5} The State timely appealed to this court. The trial court, at the request of the State, stayed its order of expungement pending the outcome of this appeal.

ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR

{¶6} "THE TRIAL COURT ERRED BY GRANTING APPELLEE'S APPLICATION FOR SEALING HIS RECORD OF MISDEMEANOR CONVICTION."

{¶7} The State of Ohio argues that the trial court erred when it granted Defendant's application for statutory expungement of his misdemeanor public indecency conviction because Defendant is not a first offender and therefore is not eligible for statutory expungement. We agree.

{¶8} Expungement is an act of grace created by the State and is a privilege, not a right. State v. Simon (2000), 87 Ohio St.3d 531, 533. Expungement should be granted only when all requirements for eligibility are met. Id.

{ΒΆ9} R.C. 2953.32(A)(1) provides, in pertinent part: "Except as provided in section 2953.61 of the Revised Code, a first offender may apply to the sentencing court . . . for the sealing of the conviction record." R.C. 2953.32(B) further provides: "The prosecutor may object to the granting of the application by filing an ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.