Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

State v. Pitts

Court of Appeals of Ohio, First District, Hamilton

September 6, 2017

STATE OF OHIO, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
STEVE PITTS, Defendant-Appellant.

         Criminal Appeal From: Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas No. B-0506665

          Joseph T. Deters, Hamilton County Prosecuting Attorney, and Scott Heenan, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for Plaintiff-Appellee,

          Roger W. Kirk, for Defendant-Appellant.

          OPINION

          Zayas, Presiding Judge.

         {¶1} Defendant-appellant Steve Pitts appeals his sentences for one count of aggravated murder, attempted murder, aggravated burglary, and kidnapping. Raising three assignments of error, Pitts argues that the trial court did not consider the purposes and principles of felony sentencing, did not properly notify him of postrelease control, and failed to merge his convictions for allied offenses. We affirm the trial court's judgment.

         Factual and Procedural Background

         {¶2} In 2005, Pitts pleaded guilty to aggravated murder, attempted murder, aggravated burglary, and kidnapping. He was sentenced to a jointly-recommended sentence of life in prison with the possibility of parole after 20 years on the aggravated-murder conviction, and ten years on each of the other offenses, all to run concurrently, for an aggregate sentence of life without parole for 20 years. Pitts did not appeal the judgment of conviction.

         {¶3} In 2015, Pitts filed a pro se motion for a resentencing hearing because the court did not impose postrelease control on the attempted murder, aggravated burglary, or kidnapping convictions. Pitts also filed a pro se sentencing memorandum arguing that all of his offenses were allied offenses that should be merged at the resentencing hearing.

         {¶4} The trial court appointed counsel to represent Pitts and conducted a hearing to notify Pitts that he is required to serve a mandatory term of five years of postrelease control upon his release from prison. At the hearing, Pitts again argued that he was improperly sentenced because the aggravated murder, attempted murder, kidnapping, and aggravated burglary were allied offenses of similar import that could not be separately punished. The trial court did not address the merger issue because the resentencing was solely for the purpose of imposing postrelease control. The court explained that it did not have jurisdiction to resentence Pitts on the other convictions.

         {¶5} The court proceeded to resentence Pitts to the same agreed sentence and advised Pitts that he would be subject to a mandatory five years of postrelease control upon his release from prison.

         Law and Analysis

         {¶6} For ease of discussion, we address his assignments of error out of order. In his second assignment of error, Pitts argues that the sentencing court did not properly notify him of postrelease control at the resentencing hearing. However, Pitts does not specifically point out in the record this alleged error and concedes that the notification was proper. Consequently, we overrule this assignment of error.

         {¶7} In his first assignment of error, Pitts argues that the sentencing court failed to consider the purposes and principles of felony sentencing as set forth in R.C. 2929.11 and 2929.12 when imposing an excessive prison term that was unsupported by the record. Pitts further contends the sentencing court failed to make the statutory findings at the resentencing hearing.

         {¶8} The trial court conducted the hearing in order to properly advise Pitts of the mandatory postrelease control as part of his sentence. The resentencing was limited to the "proper imposition of postrelease control." State v. Fischer,128 Ohio St.3d 92, 2010-Ohio-6238, 942 N.E.2d 332, ΒΆ 27. Accordingly, Pitts was only entitled to be resentenced on the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.