Court of Appeals of Ohio, Second District, Montgomery
Appeal from Municipal Court Trial Court Case No.
CRAWFORD, Atty. Reg. No. 0095634, Assistant City of Dayton
Prosecutor Attorney for Plaintiff-Appellee.
JAMES STOUT, Atty. Reg. No. 0080334, 5335 Far Hills Attorney
1} Laquisha Patrick is the owner of a dog, Nina.
Patrick, on July 21, 2016, was at work leaving Nina with her
14 year old son. Nina, while supervised by Patrick's 14
year old son, attacked a neighbor's cat resulting in the
cat's death. Patrick, as a result, was charged with a
violation of Dayton Revised Code General Ordinance (R.C.G.O.)
91.50(A)(5). The trial court, following a bench trial, found
Patrick guilty with this appeal following. We find, contrary
to Patrick's argument, that her son's conduct does
not insulate her from criminal liability for a violation of
R.C.G.O. 91.50(A)(5). We further find that the trial court
did not err when it rejected Patrick's affirmative
2} It is undisputed that on July 21, 2016 Patrick
owned Nina and that on this date Nina attacked and killed a
neighbor's cat resulting in Patrick being charged with a
violation of R.C.G.O. 91.50(A)(5). However, the circumstances
leading to Nina's attack were disputed at trial. Patrick
lives at 1253 Vernon Drive, living there with her 14 year old
son, her daughter, and her husband. Sisters Patricia and
Elizabeth Cooper, along with their brother, live at 1254
Vernon Drive which is located directly across the street from
Patrick's home. It is not disputed that when Nina
attacked the feline, Patrick was at work leaving Nina with
3} Patricia testified that late in the afternoon on
July 21 she left her home to walk her dog. Patricia testified
that as she began her walk she saw Patrick's children in
their front yard. Patricia indicated that as she was walking
she looked back and saw an unrestrained Nina run across the
street into her yard and attack Elizabeth's cat resulting
in the cat's death.
4} Patrick's son, in contrast, testified that
Nina was restrained by a long chain. One end of the chain,
according to the 14 year old, was attached to a post located
at the outer edge of the home's front porch with the
chain's other end attached to Nina's collar. The
chain, by the son's reckoning, was long enough to allow
Nina to roam, but not leave, the home's small front yard.
Patrick's son finally testified that Elizabeth's cat
came into his front yard prompting Nina's attack. A bench
trial was conducted on October 3, 2016. The trial court, in a
written decision filed on January 17, 2017, found Patrick
guilty of the charged offense. This appeal followed.
5} Patrick's sole assignment of error is as
[PATRICK'S] CONVICTIONS [SIC] IS AGAINST THE MANIFEST
WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE AND IS WITHOUT SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE
WHEN A THIRD PARTY INTERVENED IN RELEASING [PATRICK'S]
DOG FROM HER HOUSE.
presents two arguments in support of her assignment of error
- first, that she did not suffer or permit Nina to attack
Elizabeth's cat and second, that the trial court erred by
not accepting Patrick's trespass defense. These arguments
are discussed below.