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State v. McCoy

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Ninth District, Summit

June 7, 2017

STATE OF OHIO Appellee
v.
ANGELO S. MCCOY Appellant

         APPEAL FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS COUNTY OF SUMMIT, OHIO CASE No. CR 2014 11 3501 (Z)

          APPEARANCES: SHUBHRA N. AGARWAL, Attorney at Law, for Appellant.

          SHERRI BEVAN WALSH, Prosecuting Attorney, and RICHARD S. KASAY, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for Appellee.

          DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY

          JENNIFER HENSAL JUDGE.

         {¶1} Defendant-Appellant, Angelo McCoy, appeals from his conviction in the Summit County Court of Common Pleas. This Court affirms.

         I.

         {¶2} On the evening of November 15, 2014, multiple law enforcement agencies conducted a raid at a home in Akron. The raid occurred because the police suspected that a large scale, illegal dogfight was set to occur on the property. As a result of the raid, the police arrested more than 45 individuals in connection with dogfighting. Mr. McCoy was one of the individuals whom the police arrested. At the time of his arrest, he had $436 in cash on his person.

         {¶3} A grand jury indicted Mr. McCoy on one count of dogfighting, in violation of Revised Code Section 959.16(A)(5), as well as a criminal forfeiture specification for the $436 in cash. Mr. McCoy ultimately went to trial along with another of his co-defendants. The jury found him guilty of dogfighting, but the court dismissed the forfeiture specification linked to that count. The court sentenced him to serve 180 days in jail and one year of community control.

         {¶4} Mr. McCoy now appeals from his conviction and raises four assignments of error for our review. For ease of analysis, we rearrange and consolidate several of the assignments of error.

         II.

         ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR II

         MR. MCCOY'S CONVICTION FOR DOGFIGHTING WAS AGAINST THE MANIFEST WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE.

         ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR III

         THE TRIAL COURT COMMITTED REVERSIBLE AND PLAIN ERROR WHEN IT OVERRULED MR. MCCOY'S CRIM. R. 29(A) MOTION FOR JUDGMENT OF ACQUITTAL BECAUSE THE EVIDENCE WAS INSUFFICIENT TO SUPPORT A CONVICTION FOR DOGFIGHTING.

         {¶5} In his second and third assignments of error, Mr. McCoy argues that his dogfighting conviction is based on insufficient evidence and is against the manifest weight of the evidence. Because Mr. McCoy has addressed the two arguments together in his brief, we likewise consolidate them for purposes of our discussion. For the reasons that follow, we reject Mr. McCoy's arguments.

         {¶6} Under Criminal Rule 29(A), a defendant is entitled to a judgment of acquittal on a charge against him "if the evidence is insufficient to sustain a conviction * * *." Whether a conviction is supported by sufficient evidence is a question of law, which we review de novo. State v. Thompkins, 78 Ohio St.3d 380, 386 (1997). In making this determination, we must view the evidence in the light most favorable to the prosecution:

An appellate court's function when reviewing the sufficiency of the evidence to support a criminal conviction is to examine the evidence admitted at trial to determine whether such evidence, if believed, would convince the average mind of the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The relevant inquiry is whether, after viewing the evidence in a light most favorable to the prosecution, any ...

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