Court of Appeals of Ohio, Twelfth District, Butler
APPEAL FROM BUTLER COUNTY COURT OF COMMON PLEAS Case No.
Michael T. Gmoser, Butler County Prosecuting Attorney, Lina
N. Alkamhawi, for plaintiff-appellee
Michael R. Haas, for defendant-appellant
1} Defendant-appellant, Corporan Robinson, appeals a
decision from the Butler County Court of Common Pleas denying
his motion to withdraw his guilty plea. For the reasons
stated below, we affirm the decision of the trial court.
2} Robinson is a native of the Dominican Republic
and a citizen of Spain. In 2007, Robinson pled guilty to one
count of possession of marijuana in violation of R.C.
2925.11, a fifth-degree felony, and he was placed on
3} On April 1, 2016, Robinson moved to withdraw his
guilty plea pursuant to R.C. 2943.031(D). Robinson alleged
that he had not been informed of the immigration consequences
of his plea because he was not provided an interpreter at the
4} The trial court held a hearing regarding
Robinson's motion. At the hearing, Robinson admitted that
an interpreter was present at the plea hearing. However, he
maintained that the record was insufficient to establish that
the interpreter was properly credentialed or under oath at
the plea hearing. Robinson also maintained that his trial
counsel failed to advise him of the immigration consequences
of his guilty plea.
5} The trial court denied Robinson's motion.
Robinson now appeals the decision of the trial court, raising
a single assignment of error for review:
6} THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN OVERRULING DEFENDANTS
MOTION TO VACATED WHEN THE STATES FAILED TO SHOW THAT AN
INTERPRETER HAD BEEN SWORN IN AND WAS CERTIFIED TO PROVIDE
INTERPRETATION UNDER THE RULES OF THE STATE OF OHIO. [sic]
7} In his sole assignment of error, Robinson argues
the trial court erred by denying his motion to withdraw his
guilty plea. We find Robinson's assignment of error is
8} An appellate court reviews a trial court's
decision on a motion to withdraw a plea filed pursuant to
R.C. 2943.031(D) for an abuse of discretion. State v.
Reyes, 12th Dist. Butler Nos. CA2015-06-113,
CA2015-06-114, and CA2015-06-115, 2016-Ohio-2771, ¶ 14.
The extent of the trial court's discretion is dependent
upon the basis for the withdrawal motion. When the movant is
a United States citizen, the trial court's discretion is
confined to the manifest-injustice standard contained in
Crim.R. 32.1. State v. Velazquez, 12th Dist. Butler
No. CA2015-05-091, 2016-Ohio-875, ¶ 6. Where, as here,
the movant is a noncitizen filing for relief under R.C.
2943.031(D), the standards contained within the statute
govern the trial court's decision. Id.
9} R.C. 2943.031(A) requires that a trial court
personally address a defendant and advise him or her of
certain immigration consequences before accepting a guilty or
no contest plea. These consequences include the possibility
of deportation, exclusion from admission to the United
States, and the denial of naturalization. R.C. 2943.031(A).
The trial court is tasked with ensuring that the defendant
understands these potential consequences prior to accepting
the plea. Id. If the statutory requirements are not
met, a defendant may seek relief under R.C. 2943.031(D) and
withdraw the guilty plea.
10} Robinson claims that the record fails to
demonstrate that he was provided a certified interpreter to
assist him in understanding the consequences of his guilty
plea. Robinson also claims that ...