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State v. Roth

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Stark

January 9, 2018

STATE OF OHIO Plaintiff-Appellee
v.
KENNETH ARTHUR ROTH Defendant-Appellant

          Appeal from the Court of Common Pleas, Case No. 2016CR0731

          JOHN D. FERRERO Prosecuting Attorney By: RONALD MARK CALDWELL Assistant Prosecuting AttorneyFor Plaintiff-Appellee For Plaintiff-Appellee

          FREDRICK PITINII Central Plaza South For Defendant-Appellant

          JUDGES:Hon. John W. Wise, P.J. Hon. Craig R. Baldwin, J. Hon. Earle E. Wise, Jr., J.

          OPINION

          Wise, Earle, J.

         {¶ 1} Defendant-Appellant, Kenneth Arthur Roth, appeals the February 15, 2017 judgment of conviction of the Court of Common Pleas of Stark County, Ohio. Plaintiff-Appellee is the state of Ohio.

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         {¶ 2} On December 11, 2009, the victim, age 61, was found murdered in her home. The cause of death was ligature strangulation. She was discovered face down on the floor with her underwear tied around her neck. A laptop, two firearms, and a small fireproof safe were found missing from the home. DNA testing on several items did not reveal any suspects. With the advancements of DNA testing, the DNA samples were again tested in 2013 using Y-STR analysis. The results could not exclude appellant or his male paternal relatives. Appellant had worked as a handyman for the victim.

         {¶ 3} On April 20, 2016, the Stark County Grand Jury indicted appellant on one count of aggravated murder in violation of R.C. 2903.01. A jury trial commenced on February 6, 2017. The jury found appellant guilty as charged. By judgment entry filed February 15, 2017, the trial court sentenced appellant to life in prison without parole.

         {¶ 4} Appellant filed an appeal and this matter is now before this court for consideration. Assignments of error are as follows:

         I

         {¶ 5} "DEFENDANT'S CONVICTION WAS NOT SUPPORTED BY SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE AND THE COURT ERRED AS A MATTER OF LAW IN DENYING THE DEFENSE'S RULE 29 MOTION AND SUBMITTING THE MATTER TO THE JURY."

         II

         {¶ 6} "APPELLANT'S CONVICTION WAS AGAINST THE MANIFEST WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE."

         I, II

         {¶ 7} In his two assignments of error, appellant claims the trial court erred in denying his Crim.R. 29 motion for acquittal, and his conviction was not supported by the ...


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