Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Ashland
from the Ashland County Court of Common Pleas, Case No.
Plaintiff-Appellee CHRISTOPHER R. TUNNELL Ashland County
Prosecuting Attorney By: VICTOR R. PEREZ Assistant
Defendant-Appellant GRETCHEN A. HOLDERMAN Lillie &
Amicus Curiae MAUREEN SHERIDAN KENNY.
JUDGES: Hon. Patricia A. Delaney, P.J. Hon. William B.
Hoffman, J. Hon. John W. Wise, J.
Defendant-appellant Shannon Eckley appeals the judgment
entered by the Ashland County Common Pleas Court overruling
her motion to withdraw her guilty plea to two counts of child
endangering (R.C. 2919.22(B)(2), (4)). Plaintiff-appellee is
the state of Ohio.
OF THE FACTS AND CASE
On or about October 25, 2012, Appellant was caught
shoplifting candy at a local convenience store. Although
police offered her a ride home, she refused, stating she
would rather go to jail than return to the home where she
resided with her roommates, Jessica Hunt and Jordie Callahan.
When police went to the home of Hunt and Callahan to
investigate, Hunt and Callahan showed the police videos of
Appellant beating her young daughter. On October 25, 2012, a
complaint was filed in the Ashland County Common Pleas Court
charging Appellant with two counts of child endangering,
felonies of the third degree. On October 31, 2012, she
entered a plea of not guilty. A bill of information was filed
on December 7, 2012, stating as to Count One, Appellant
repeatedly tied the child up and left her alone in a room for
extended periods of time, in violation of R.C. 2919.22(B)(2).
As to Count Two, the bill of information stated Appellant
often and repeatedly struck the child in the face, in
violation of R.C. 2919.22(B)(4).
Appellant entered a plea of guilty on December 17, 2012. A
presentence investigation was ordered, and a sentencing
hearing was conducted by the court on February 12, 2013.
During the time between the guilty plea and the sentencing
hearing, further investigation occurred into the conduct of
Hunt and Callahan. At the sentencing hearing, counsel for
Your Honor, this is a case unlike any that I have seen in the
30 years that I have been doing this type of work. It was
about a week ago that Mr. Lange and the Prosecutor's
office properly notified me that there was more to the facts
of this case, that [sic] had been revealed to me, even by
my own client, and it was late last week that I was
served with Sergeant Baker's letters which the Court has
in its possession, and that is when I really became aware of
the magnitude of behaviors that occurred in that household.
The first thought that I had was rather than a sentencing
memorandum, is file a motion to withdraw the plea, and having
discussed the matter with the State and also reviewing the
mens rea requirement in this case, which is reckless, it was
my thought that yes, in deed [sic], the State could prove the
reckless state of mind required to commit this crime. Sent.