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City of Cleveland v. Edwards

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth District, Cuyahoga

February 15, 2018

CITY OF CLEVELAND PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE
v.
DONALD EDWARDS DEFENDANT-APPELLANT

         Criminal Appeal from the Cleveland Municipal Court Case No. 2016 CRB 021363

          ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLANT Mark Stanton Cuyahoga County Public Defender BY: John T. Martin Assistant Public Defender Courthouse Square.

          ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE Barbara A. Langhenry Law Director City of Cleveland BY: Kimberley G. Barnett-Mills Chief Assistant City Prosecutor BY: Karyn J. Lynn Assistant City Prosecutor.

          BEFORE: E.T. Gallagher, J., E.A. Gallagher, A.J., and Boyle, J.

          JOURNAL ENTRY AND OPINION

          EILEEN T. GALLAGHER, JUDGE.

         {¶1} Defendant-appellant, Donald Edwards, appeals his conviction of violating a temporary protection order and assigns one error for review:

Mr. Edwards's guilty plea was not validly entered and accepted, and must be vacated.

         {¶2} We find merit to the appeal and reverse the trial court's judgment.

         I. Facts and Procedural History

         {¶3} Edwards was charged in the Cleveland Municipal Court with violating a temporary protection order in violation of R.C. 2919.27. On the scheduled trial date, the prosecutor requested a continuance of the trial. Edwards, who had been in jail for almost two months by that time, asked to be released on bond. In the midst of the discussion on the bond issue, Edwards exclaimed: "I'll take the deal." (Tr. 15.) In response to the court's inquiry regarding the deal, the prosecutor advised that Edwards would plead to one count of violating a temporary protection order, and the city would agree to dismiss the charges in a separate case arising from the same incident.

         {¶4} Upon questioning, Edwards indicated to the court that he wished to enter a plea because he wanted to resolve the case. The court then advised Edwards that he would be sentenced at a later date and released Edwards from jail on bond. Edwards was later sentenced to two years of inactive community control and placed on the mental-health docket. Edwards now appeals his conviction.

         II. Law and Analysis

         {¶5} In his sole assignment of error, Edwards argues his no contest plea[1] should be vacated because the trial court failed to advise him of the effect of his plea in violation of Crim.R. 11. He also asserts that he never actually entered a plea.

         {¶6} Crim.R. 11 sets forth certain constitutional and procedural requirements with which a trial court must comply prior to accepting a guilty or no contest plea in order to ensure that a defendant enters a guilty or no contest plea knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily. State v. Engle, 74 Ohio St.3d 525, 527, 660 N.E.2d 450 (1996). Whether the trial court accepted a plea in compliance with ...


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