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State v. Cutshall

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District

August 19, 2013

STATE OF OHIO Plaintiff - Appellee
v.
EDWARD A. CUTSHALL Defendant-Appellant

Appeal from the Stark County Court of Common Pleas, Case No. 2012CA1236

For Plaintiff-Appellee: RENEE M. WATSON

For Defendant-Appellant: GEORGE URBAN Assistant Prosecuting Attorney

Hon. Sheila G. Farmer, P.J. Hon. John W. Wise, J. Hon. Craig R. Baldwin, J.

OPINION

Baldwin, J.

(¶1} Appellant Edward A. Cutshall appeals a judgment of the Stark County Common Pleas Court convicting him of one count of burglary in violation of R.C. 2911.12(A)(2) and sentencing him to five years incarceration. Appellee is the State of Ohio.

STATEMENT OF FACTS AND CASE

(¶2} On August 9, 2012, Brittany Buccini was home in her apartment with her two-year-old daughter. Appellant knocked on the door, yelling that he wanted his money back. Brittany pretended she was not home, and appellant left. Several days earlier, appellant attended a small party at Brittany's apartment. Appellant became intoxicated at the party and had to be carried home to his apartment across the street, where he lived with his friends Sarah Lyon and Jonah Fowler.

(¶3} Brittany called her friend Amanda Foster and told her about appellant's "visit." The two met at the park with their children. Brittany returned home around 5:00 p.m. While she was making dinner, appellant began pounding on her door again. Brittany ignored him, and he went away. Brittany was disturbed by appellant's visit and called her friend Amanda to come over with her boyfriend, Miguel Aguayo.

(¶4} Amanda and Miguel began playing cards with Brittany in Brittany's apartment. Appellant returned between 8:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. A shouting match ensued between appellant and the occupants of Brittany's apartment. Appellant ran up the steps to Brittany's apartment. Brittany, Amanda and Miguel ran inside and closed the door. Appellant kicked the exterior door to the apartment completely off the frame. Brittany and her friends ran into the living room and held the interior door shut. Appellant continued to yell about missing money, and threatened to kill Brittany and stab her daughter. Amanda called the police. Appellant ran outside and started throwing rocks at the building.

(¶5} When Canton Police Officer Michael Rastetter arrived, a neighbor flagged him down and told him a white male was throwing rocks at the building and yelling, and had kicked in the door of Brittany's apartment.

(¶6} Rastetter proceeded up the steps to Brittany's apartment, where he noted the exterior door had been broken off both hinges and the deadbolt, and was hanging by a piece of wood. He found Brittany and her daughter in the living room, along with Amanda and Miguel. Brittany was distraught and crying, and very nervous. She jumped at any sound coming from outside. She told Rastetter that appellant kicked in her exterior door and tried to gain access to the living room, but they held the interior door shut. Brittany was hesitant to go with Rastetter to his cruiser to complete paperwork, but reluctantly complied.

(¶7} While in the cruiser, Brittany thought she heard something in the back of the apartment building. Rastetter went to check the noise to make Brittany feel better. As he checked the backyard, Brittany started screaming, "He's out here!" When Rastetter returned, appellant was standing by the cruiser.

(ΒΆ8} Appellant was charged with one count of burglary. The case proceeded to jury trial in the Stark County Common Pleas Court. At trial, Jonah Fowler testified that although appellant kicked the door, he did not break the door open, and appellant never entered the apartment. A neighbor also testified that ...


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