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State v. Steiner

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Holmes

May 22, 2017

STATE OF OHIO Plaintiff-Appellee
v.
TIMOTHY D. STEINER Defendant-Appellant

         Criminal appeal from the Holmes County Court of Common Pleas, Case No.15CR054

          For Plaintiff-Appellee STEVE KNOWLING Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Holmes County.

          For Defendant-Appellant TIMOTHY D. STEINER PRO SE.

          JUDGES: Hon. W. Scott Gwin, P.J. Hon. William B. Hoffman, J. Hon. John W. Wise, J.

          OPINION

          GWIN, P.J.

         {¶1} Appellant Timothy Steiner appeals the judgment entry of the Holmes County Court of Common Pleas dismissing his petition to vacate or set aside judgment of conviction or sentences. Appellee is the State of Ohio.

         Facts & Procedural History

         {¶2} In 2015, appellant befriended a nine-year-old child after meeting her at his daughter's slumber party. He began to use Facebook to send the child inappropriate messages and requests for photographs. The child's mother discovered the messages and contacted the Holmes County Sheriff's Office.

         {¶3} An officer with the Wooster Police Department who was trained and experienced in Internet Crimes Against Children assumed the child's identity on the Facebook account and cell phone. Over a period of two weeks, appellant sent hundreds of messages that became increasingly sexual in nature and contained detailed and graphic depictions of appellant's proposals for sexual contact with the child.

         {¶4} Appellant suggested a meeting take place on May 22, 2015 to engage in sexual conduct and asked the child to prop open her ground floor bedroom window and leave a pair of her pink panties in the window so he would know which bedroom was hers. Appellant detailed the sexual acts he would engage in with the child.

         {¶5} The Holmes County Sheriff's Office used a vacant house to pose as the child's home and had surveillance teams in place to record the encounter. Appellant approached the window, removed the panties, and attempted to open the window. Appellant was placed under arrest.

         {¶6} Appellant was indicted on June 29, 2015 on one count of attempted rape, four counts of importuning, and one count of burglary. Appellant signed a plea of guilty form. Prior to the plea, the prosecuting attorney amended Count 1 of the indictment, attempted rape, to a felony of the first degree. Based on plea negotiations, appellant entered a plea of guilty to Counts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Count 6 was dismissed by the state. The trial court sentenced appellant to nine years in prison on Count 1 and twenty-four months on each of the importuning counts to be served consecutively, for a total year of seventeen years in prison.

         {¶7} Appellant appealed his sentence to this Court, raising one assignment of error, and arguing the trial court erred in sentencing him to consecutive sentences for his felony convictions. We overruled appellant's assignment of error in State v. Steiner, 5th Dist. Holmes No. 15CA17, 2016-Ohio-4648 on June 27, 2016. Appellant appealed this Court's decision to the Ohio Supreme Court on August 10, 2016. On December 28, 2016, the Ohio Supreme Court declined jurisdiction of appellant's appeal.

         {¶8} On September 21, 2016, appellant filed a petition to vacate or set aside judgment of convictions or sentence. Appellant claimed in his petition: ineffective assistance of counsel; that his Miranda rights were not read at the time of his arrest; a hearsay ...


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