Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth District, Cuyahoga
Appeal from the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Case
Nos. CR-15-602090-A and CR-16-603218-A
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT Rachel A. Kopec
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE Michael C. O'Malley Cuyahoga
County Prosecutor Christine M. Vacha Assistant County
BEFORE: Stewart, J., E.A. Gallagher, P.J., and Blackmon, J.
JOURNAL ENTRY AND OPINION
J. STEWART, J.
Defendant-appellant Taylor Stewart challenges his 54-month
sentence after being convicted of two felonies and a
misdemeanor. Stewart first argues that the trial court did
not properly consider the purposes of felony sentencing as
required by R.C. 2929.11 and the seriousness and recidivism
factors contained in R.C. 2929.12. Second, he argues that the
court wrongfully imposed a consecutive sentence under R.C.
2929.14(C)(4). Finding no merit to Stewart's arguments,
we affirm the trial court.
While awaiting trial on an indictment for two counts of
felonious assault and one count of domestic violence, amongst
other charges, Stewart was indicted again for subsequent
crimes committed against the same victim. The second
indictment consisted of one count of violating a protective
order and one count of intimidation of a crime victim or
Stewart subsequently pleaded guilty to charges from both
indictments. From the first indictment, he pleaded guilty to
attempted felonious assault, a felony of the third degree.
The remaining counts from that indictment were nolled. From
the second, he pleaded guilty to attempted intimidation of a
crime victim or witness, a felony of the fourth degree, and
violating a protective order, a misdemeanor of the first
The court sentenced Stewart to 36 months in prison for the
attempted felonious assault, 18 months in prison for the
attempted intimidation, and time served for the protective
order violation. The court ordered that his sentences run
R.C. 2953.08 limits an appellate court's ability to
review felony sentences. As relevant to this case, an
appellate court may modify a sentence only if the court
"clearly and convincingly finds * * * [t]hat the
sentence is otherwise contrary to law." R.C.
2953.08(G)(2). As such, this court does not review a sentence
for abuse of discretion. See State v. Akins, 8th
Dist. Cuyahoga No. 99478, 2013-Ohio-5023, ¶ 15.
In his first assignment of error, Stewart argues that his
sentence is contrary to law because the trial court imposed a
prison sentence without properly considering the requisite
statutory factors from R.C. 2929.11 and 2929.12. He does not
dispute the fact that his sentence falls within the statutory
range for the offenses committed.
R.C. 2929.11 directs a court to consider the
"overriding" purposes of felony sentencing: (1)
"protection of] the public from future crime by the
offender or others, " and (2) "punish[ing] the
offender." R.C. 2929.11(A). The court is to accomplish
these purposes using "minimum sanctions" and
without placing any "unnecessary burden on state or
local government resources." Id. To achieve
these purposes, a court must also consider the need for
incapacitation, deterrence, rehabilitation, and restitution.
Id. An appropriate sentence is thus one
"reasonably calculated" to achieve the overriding
purposes of felony sentencing and is "commensurate with,
" while "not demeaning the seriousness" of,
the conduct and its impact. R.C. 2929.11(B).
R.C. 2929.12 invests the trial court with discretion to
"determine the most effective way to comply with the
purposes and principles of sentencing." R.C. 2929.12(A).
In doing so, the court must consider applicable factors from
divisions (B) and (C) relating to the "seriousness of
the conduct, " and divisions (D) and (E) relating to
recidivism. Id. The statute also permits the trial
court to consider "any other ...