The State ex rel. Bailey et al., Appellants,
Ohio Parole Board, Appellee.
Submitted September 26, 2017
from the Court of Appeals for Franklin County, No. 15AP-887,
Michael K. Bailey, pro se.
M. Schmitz, pro se.
William E. Morehouse, pro se.
Benjamin D. Hudach, pro se.
Jeffrey S. Holland, pro se. Michael DeWine, Attorney General,
and Zachary R. Huffman, Assistant Attorney General, for
1} Appellants, Michael Bailey, Steven Schmitz,
William Morehouse, Benjamin Hudach, and Jeffrey Holland
("the inmates"), appeal the judgment of the Tenth
District Court of Appeals dismissing their complaint against
the Ohio Parole Board ("the board") seeking a writ
of mandamus. We affirm the court of appeals' judgment.
2} On September 23, 2015, the inmates filed in the
court of appeals an original action against the board,
seeking a writ of mandamus. At the time, all five were
incarcerated in state detention facilities and were "old
law" offenders. An old-law offender is an inmate
sentenced to an indeterminate prison term for a crime
committed prior the enactment of the July 1, 1996, sentencing
reforms. They alleged that the board has an unwritten policy
of denying parole to old-law offenders. They based their
allegation on statements such as the following:
• On April 16, 2012, board spokeswoman JoEllen Smith was
quoted in the Lancaster Gazette as saying, "[A]fter 16
years all the inmates likely to be paroled have been released
already, leaving behind 3, 200 of the State's worst
inmates to cycle through the process again and again."
• On April 30, 2013, the Columbus Dispatch quoted
then-board chairwoman Cynthia Mausser as saying,
"Because we're 16 years from Senate Bill 2 most of
the people suitable for parole have already been
also allege that Parole Board Member Andre Imbrogno and
Victims Representative Kathleen Kovach have made remarks