Court of Appeals of Ohio, First District, Hamilton
Appeal From: Hamilton County TRIAL NO. B-1601689 Court of
T. Deters, Hamilton County Prosecuting Attorney, and Paula E.
Adams, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for
Raymond T. Faller, Hamilton County Public Defender, and
Timothy J. Bicknell, Assistant Public Defender, for
Plaintiff-appellant the state of Ohio has appealed the
judgments of the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas
granting defendant-appellee Robert Williams's motion to
dismiss the indictment charging him with failing to give
notice of an address change and failing to verify his current
address and his motion to "cancel" his duty to
register under R.C. Chapter 2950. We affirm the trial
In 2006, Williams pleaded guilty to attempted abduction,
without a sexual-motivation specification, and menacing by
stalking. He was sentenced to concurrent terms of 18
months' imprisonment. Upon his release from prison, a
prison official attempted to notify Williams of registration
duties under R.C. Chapter 2950. The notification form, which
Williams did not sign, states that Williams is a "Tier I
Child Victim Offender, " and that he is required to
register annually for 15 years.
In this matter, Williams was indicted for failing to notify
the Hamilton County Sheriff of an address change and failing
to verify his current address. Williams filed a motion to
dismiss the indictment, arguing that he could not be required
to register as a sex offender because attempted abduction
without a sexual motivation is not a sex offense, nor could
he be required to register as a child-victim offender because
no court had made findings regarding the age or status of the
victim of his attempted-abduction offense. The trial court
agreed and dismissed the indictment.
The state filed a "motion for reconsideration, " to
which it attached various documents purporting to show that
Williams was a child-victim offender because his victim was
under the age of 18 and not his child. Williams made an oral
motion to "cancel" his duty to register. Following
a hearing, the trial court struck the state's motion as a
nullity and granted Williams's oral motion, stating that
Williams "has no lawful duty to register as a sex
offender in the State of Ohio" and ordering the sheriff
"to remove [Williams's] name and information from
the sex offender registry forthwith."
The state appealed. The state's notice of appeal states
that it is appealing the trial court's judgment
dismissing the indictment and its judgment granting
Williams's motion to "cancel" his duty to
register. However, the state has not raised an assignment of
error as to the trial court's judgment granting
Williams's motion to "cancel" his duty to
The state's sole assignment of error alleges that the
trial court erred in granting Williams's motion to
dismiss the indictment because Williams has a duty to
register as a child-victim-oriented offender. We note
initially that the notification of registration duties given
to Williams by the prison official states that Williams is a
"Tier I Child Victim Offender." He is not.
"Tier I" indicates that the offender is required to
register under Ohio's version of the Adam Walsh Act,
which became effective January 1, 2008. Because Williams
committed his offense in 2006, he falls under former R.C.
Chapter 2950, Megan's Law. See State v.
Williams, 129 Ohio St.3d 344, 2011-Ohio-3374, 952 N.E.2d
1108 (holding that applying the Adam Walsh Act to a defendant
who committed his offense prior to its enactment violates
Article II, Section 28 of the Ohio Constitution). So Williams
was correct in alleging that he has no duty to register under
the Adam Walsh Act.
The state argues that even though Williams is not required to
register under the Adam Walsh Act, he is required "by
operation of law" to register under Megan's Law as a
Under former R.C. 2950.01(S)(1)(a), attempted abduction was a
child-victim-oriented offense if it was "committed by a
person eighteen years of age or older, when the victim of the
violation [was] under eighteen years of age and [was] not a
child of the person who [committed] the violation." Only
after the trial court had entered its judgment granting
Williams's motion to dismiss the indictment, did the
state attempt to show the age and status of the victim
through documents attached to its "motion to
reconsider." But the trial court determined that the
state's attempt to supplement the record was improper,
and the court struck the motion and the attached documents on
the basis that the state's "motion for
reconsideration" was "a nullity." The state
has not assigned any error as to the trial court's
"nullity" determination and has not argued that the
court erred in striking the motion and the documents.
There simply is nothing in the record to show the age of the
victim or that the victim was not Williams's child,
prerequisites for requiring Williams to register as a
child-victim-oriented offender under Megan's Law.
Therefore, the trial court did not err in granting
Williams's motion to dismiss the indictment. The
state's sole assignment of error is overruled.
The judgments of the ...