Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eleventh District, Geauga
Appeal from the Geauga County Court of Common Pleas. Case No.
15 C 000117.
R. Flaiz, Geauga County Prosecutor, and Nicholas A. Burling,
Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Courthouse Annex, 231 Main
Street, Suite 3A, Chardon, OH 44024 (For Plaintiff-Appellee).
Matthew C. Bangerter, P.O. Box 148, Mentor, OH 44061 (For
TIMOTHY P. CANNON, JUDGE.
On February 10, 2016, appellant, Randolph H. Jack, appealed a
judgment of the Geauga County Court of Common Pleas,
following a bench trial, which found him guilty of two
felonies and sentenced him to 30 months in prison. This court
affirmed that decision on December 27, 2016, in State v.
Jack, 11th Dist. Geauga No. 2016-G-0057, 2016-Ohio-8424.
On March 9, 2017, this court granted appellant's motion
to reopen his direct appeal for the limited purpose of
considering whether the trial court erred by imposing
separate sentences for alleged allied offenses, in
contravention of R.C. 2941.25, and whether previous appellate
counsel was ineffective for failing to raise this issue. For
the reasons that follow, the trial court's judgment is
On June 2, 2015, Detective John Bilicic of the Geauga County
Sheriffs Department was investigating whether appellant was
unlawfully purchasing chemicals for the manufacture of drugs.
He was informed by Lieutenant Pomnean of the Chester Township
Police Department that appellant was also suspected of
attempting to sell a 2014 Caterpillar Skid Steer that was
reported stolen in Radford City, Virginia, on or about May
15, 2015. The communication received from the Radford City
Police Department included a picture of the skid steer, its
model number (259B3), its serial number
(YYZ0443765SSGPO14591), and stated there was reason to
believe appellant had listed it for
sale on craigslist.org.
Detective Bilicic contacted Detective Eric McClanahan of the
Radford City Police Department and was informed the suspect
had towed the skid steer from a worksite on a trailer behind
a white pickup truck. The truck's lower half was a color
other than white, had a red cap (or "campertop-like
device") on the back of the truck, and a tow mirror on
the passenger side of the truck. The trailer had a Virginia
registration sticker affixed to it and chrome lug nuts on
only one wheel.
Detective Bilicic accessed the posting on
craigslist.org, which listed the model number as
259B3 and the selling price as $31, 000. Detective Bilicic
sent a text message to the number listed on the posting,
expressing an interest in purchasing the skid steer. The
seller responded he would only accept cash because he did not
have a bank account. A meeting was arranged for 8:00 a.m. on
June 3, 2015, in Auburn Township.
At the meeting site, Detective Bilicic observed appellant
driving a white pickup truck with a different-colored lower
half, but it did not have tow mirrors or a red cap on the
back. Attached to the truck was a trailer that had chrome lug
nuts on only one wheel. The trailer had a Virginia
registration sticker but Ohio license plates. On the trailer
was a 2014 Caterpillar Skid Steer, model number 259B3.
Detective Bilicic compared the serial number of the skid
steer with the serial number provided by the Radford City
Police Department, which he had written on his hand. The
first eight digits and letters on his hand (YYZ04437), taken
from the entire number provided by Radford City Police
(YYZ04437 765SSGPO14591), matched the last eight
digits and letters affixed to the skid steer (CAT0259BP
Detective Bilicic arrested appellant for Receiving Stolen
Property. Based on the entire serial number provided from the
piece of machinery, dispatch reported to Detective Bilicic
that the skid steer was not reported stolen. Almost
immediately, however, Detective Bilicic received confirmation
from Caterpillar that the skid steer was, in fact, the one
reported stolen and explained that both numbers were assigned
to the machine for different purposes: one was the
"serial number" and one was the "PIN."
The truck, trailer, and skid steer were impounded. Detective
Jeffrey Raymond of the Geauga County Sheriffs Office
performed an inventory search of the truck and discovered
methamphetamine behind the gas cap and bolt cutters under the
hood. Detective Bilicic received a search warrant from the
Chardon Municipal Court authorizing him to search
appellant's cell phone, which was seized incident to the
arrest. The cell phone contained evidence of criminal
activity regarding the stolen skid steer and a stolen boat.
Appellant was arrested on June 3, 2015, and was arraigned in
the Chardon Municipal Court. The matter was subsequently
bound over to the Geauga County Court of Common Pleas. On
July 14, 2015, appellant was indicted by the Geauga County
Grand Jury on six counts: (1) Receiving Stolen Property (the
skid steer), a fourth-degree felony, in violation of R.C.
2913.51(A); (2) Aggravated Possession of Drugs, a
fifth-degree felony, in violation of R.C. 2925.11(A) &
(C)(1)(a); (3) Possessing Criminal Tools (the impounded
truck), a fifth-degree felony, in violation of R.C.
2923.24(A); (4) Grand Theft (the boat), a fourth-degree
felony, in violation of R.C. 2913.02(A)(1); (5) Breaking and
Entering, a fifth-degree felony, in violation of R.C.
2911.13(B); and (6) Illegal Assembly or Possession of
Chemicals for the Manufacture of Drugs, a third-degree
felony, in violation of R.C. 2925.041(A).
Appellant remained in jail in lieu of posting bond and was
appointed a public defender. He filed various pro se motions,
which the trial court overruled, including motions to remove
his public defender, to readdress bond consideration, and to
dismiss on the basis of a speedy trial violation. The public
defender was subsequently granted leave to withdraw on
September 22, 2015, due to a "complete breakdown in the
attorney/client relationship." The trial court appointed
new counsel to represent appellant on October 7, 2015, who
then filed a motion to suppress evidence. The motion was
overruled following a hearing.
Appellant filed a waiver of jury trial. The state dismissed
Count Five and Count Six (Breaking and Entering and Illegal
Assembly or Possession), and the matter proceeded to trial
before the bench on February 1, 2016. The state ...