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State v. Reinthaler

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Seventh District, Mahoning

December 22, 2017

STATE OF OHIO PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE
v.
JOSEPH J. REINTHALER, JR. DEFENDANT-APPELLANT

         Criminal Appeal from the Court of Common Pleas of Mahoning County, Ohio Case No. 2015 CR 1000

          For Plaintiff-Appellee: Atty. Paul J. Gains Mahoning County Prosecutor Atty. Nicholas A. Brevetta Assistant Prosecuting Attorney

          For Defendant-Appellant: Atty. Edward A. Czopur DeGenova & Yarwood, Ltd.

          JUDGES: Hon. Cheryl L. Waite, Hon. Mary DeGenaro, Hon. Carol Ann Robb

          OPINION

          WAITE, J.

         {¶1} Appellant Joseph J. Reinthaler, Jr. appeals his conviction and sentence entered by the Mahoning County Court of Common Pleas following his plea of guilty to one count of tampering with records, one count of forgery, one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, and sixty-seven counts of tampering with records. Appellant contends his plea was not made knowingly, intelligently and voluntarily, and should be vacated. Appellant also asserts his sentence was clearly and convincingly contrary to law because the trial court failed to make the requisite findings regarding consecutive sentencing. Based on the following, we find Appellant's guilty plea was knowingly, voluntarily and intelligently entered as the trial court strictly complied with Crim.R. 11 and Appellant's first assignment of error is overruled. Regarding Appellant's second assignment of error, the record reveals the trial court clearly engaged in the required analysis when imposing consecutive sentences at the sentencing hearing. Accordingly, the judgment of the trial court is affirmed in this respect. However, as the trial court quoted directly from R.C. 2929.14(C)(4) in the sentencing entry and did not incorporate the findings already made on the record at the sentencing hearing, a limited remand is ordered for the trial court to enter a nunc pro tunc entry, properly addressing the consecutive sentencing findings.

         Factual and Procedural History

         {¶2} Appellant operated an automobile dealership. According to evidence introduced by the state, Appellant took in cars as trade-ins at the dealership, assuring the seller that Appellant would pay off the existing liens on the car. Appellant subsequently forged signatures and altered documents so it would appear the liens had been paid. Appellant then sold the subject cars to other, unsuspecting buyers.

         {¶3} In an indictment and superseding indictment, Appellant was charged with one count of tampering with records in violation of R.C. 2913.42(A)(2), (B)(1)(4), a felony of the third degree; one count of forgery in violation of R.C. 2913.31(A)(3), (C), a felony of the fifth degree; one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity in violation of R.C. 2923.32(A)(3), (B)(1), a felony of the first degree; and sixty-seven counts of tampering with records in violation of R.C. 2913.42(A)(2), (B)(1)(4), felonies of the third degree. On August 3, 2016, Appellant pleaded guilty to all charges. There was no sentencing recommendation by the state.

         {¶4} On November 3, 2016, a sentencing hearing was held. Appellant was sentenced to two years of incarceration for tampering with records; twelve months for forgery; ten years for engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity; and twelve months for the sixty-seven counts of tampering with records. The trial court ordered counts one, two, three and four to run consecutive to each other, with the remaining counts to be served concurrently, for a total prison time of fourteen years.

         {¶5} Appellant filed this timely appeal.

         ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR NO. 1

         APPELLANT'S PLEA WAS NOT MADE KNOWINGLY, INTELLIGENTLY AND VOLUNTARILY AS THE TRIAL COURT COMPLETELY FAILED TO ADVISE APPELLANT OF THE EFFECT OF HIS PLEA AND/OR THAT UPON ACCEPTANCE OF HIS PLEA THAT THE COURT COULD PROCEED IMMEDIATELY TO JUDGMENT AND SENTENCE THEREBY INVALIDATING THE PLEA AS A WHOLE.

         {¶6} Appellant alleges that he did not enter his plea knowingly, intelligently and voluntarily because he was not informed of the effect of his plea or that the matter ...


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