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State v. Laber

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fourth District

June 11, 2013

STATE OF OHIO, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
DAVID L. LABER, Defendant-Appellant.

CRIMINAL APPEAL FROM COMMON PLEAS COURT

COUNSEL FOR APPELLANT: Michael A. Davenport.

COUNSEL FOR APPELLEE: J.B. Collier, Jr., Lawrence County Prosecuting Attorney, and W. Mack Anderson, Lawrence County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney.

DECISION AND JUDGMENT ENTRY

Peter B. Abele, Judge

{¶ 1} This is an appeal from Lawrence County Common Pleas Court judgments of conviction and sentence. A jury found David L. Laber, defendant below and appellant herein, guilty of making terrorist threats in violation of R.C. 2909.23(A)(1)(a)(2).

{¶ 2} Appellant assigns the following errors for review[1]:

FIRST ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR:
"THE JURY'S VERDICT FINDING APPELLANT GUILTY OF VIOLATING R.C. § 2909.03 WAS AGAINST THE MANIFEST WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE" SECOND ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR:
"THE TRIAL COURT JUDGE ABUSED HIS DISCRETION BY TAKING INTO CONSIDERATION APPELLANT'S PRIOR RECORD AND IMPOSING A SENTENCE FOR THREE YEARS FOR VIOLATING R.C. §2909.23."
THIRD ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR:
"PROBABLE CAUSE DID NOT EXIST FOR APPELLANT'S WARRANTLESS ARREST, AND AS A RESULT, THE ARREST OF APPELLANT VIOLATED HIS FOURTH AMENDMENT RIGHTS UNDER THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION."

{¶ 3} On August 1, 2012, appellant was employed at "Emerson Labored" in Ironton, Ohio.[2] While so employed, he engaged in a conversation with Linda Lawless and asked if she ever thought of shooting someone or bombing their place of employment. Lawless replied in the negative. Appellant continued that he thought of shooting two co-workers and that he had three bombs and "would start at the front office." Lawless contacted her superiors who, later that day, terminated appellant's employment and notified authorities.

{¶ 4} Three weeks later, the Lawrence County Grand Jury returned an indictment that charged appellant with making a terrorist threat. Appellant pled not guilty and the matter proceeded to a jury trial. At trial, Lawless testified concerning the comments and further related that she (1) took appellant's threats seriously, and (2) felt like appellant tried to intimidate her. In addition, several other Labored employees testified as to the company's response to appellant's remarks.

{¶ 5} After hearing the evidence, the jury returned a guilty verdict and the trial court imposed a three year prison ...


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