Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth District, Cuyahoga
Appeal from the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Case
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT Mary Elaine Hall.
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE Michael C. O'Malley Cuyahoga
County Prosecutor By: Jeffrey Schnatter Melissa Riley
Assistant Prosecuting Attorneys.
BEFORE: Keough, A.J., Boyle, J., and Blackmon, J.
JOURNAL ENTRY AND OPINION
KATHLEEN ANN KEOUGH, ADMINISTRATIVE JUDGE.
Defendant-appellant, Lawrence J. Wallace
("Wallace"), appeals from the trial court's
judgment, rendered after a jury verdict, finding him guilty
of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor, sentencing him to
one year incarceration, and determining he is a Tier II
sexual offender. Wallace contends that he was denied his
constitutional right to effective assistance of counsel when
counsel failed to exercise a peremptory challenge and allowed
a biased juror to be seated on the jury. Finding no merit to
the appeal, we affirm.
Wallace was indicted in a multicount indictment as follows:
Count 1, rape (vaginal intercourse) in violation of R.C.
2907.02(A); Count 2, rape by force (cunnilingus) in violation
of R.C. 2907.02(A)(2); Count 3, rape by force (digital
penetration) in violation of R.C. 2907.02(A)(2); Count 4,
gross sexual imposition (touching the victim's breast) in
violation of R.C. 2907.05(A)(1); Count 5, gross sexual
imposition (touching the victim's thighs) in violation of
R.C. 2907.05(A)(1); Count 6, unlawful sexual conduct with a
minor in violation of R.C. 2907.04(A), with a furthermore
specification that the victim was at least 13 years old but
younger than 16, and that Wallace was ten or more years older
than the victim at the time of the offense; and Count 7,
kidnapping in violation of R.C. 2905.01(A)(4). The charges
arose out of incident involving Wallace and his 14-year-old
During voir dire, Juror No. 13 revealed that she was a police
officer for the city of Cleveland police department but
stated that she believed she could be a juror because "I
know how to be impartial and how to, you know, give people
fair judgment." She further revealed that two years
earlier, she had been the victim of kidnap and rape by her
ex-husband, who pleaded guilty to domestic violence as a
result of the incident. She stated that her experience would
not cause her to be biased against Wallace, however, despite
the rape allegations in this case. The prosecutor asked her:
PROSECUTOR: Okay. How do you think that will affect you,
hearing from a victim, her saying she's a victim of a
JUROR NO. 13: I don't - I know that it will not affect me
to be biased. And the reason I say that is because it
wasn't until I was explaining to the police officer and
the detective that came out that they put the title
"rape" on it.
I just - sometimes when we think of rape, we just think of
someone laying down and penetrating themselves into you, but
there's so many other, you know, surrounding things of
In my situation, it was him sticking his finger in me, and it
wasn't, like, a full-blown. It was - the fact that he
touched me there and it penetrated even this much, it was
technically rape. So I'm not even - I guess I'm not
hurt by it or bothered by it as much as, I guess, people
think I should be.
I just don't like to talk about it in front of a lot of
people because I don't want them to think that, oh,
she's weak, or that happened to her, or, oh, my God. I