Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth District, Cuyahoga
Criminal Appeal from the Cuyahoga County Court of Common
Pleas Case No. CR-16-605250-A
Patrick S. Lavelle Van Sweringen Arcade ATTORNEY FOR
Michael C. O'Malley Cuyahoga County Prosecutor, Jillian
Eckart Assistant County Prosecutor ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE
BEFORE: Boyle, J., E.A. Gallagher, A.J., and Keough, J.
JOURNAL ENTRY AND OPINION
J. BOYLE, J.
Defendant-appellant, Derek Jackson, appeals his convictions
for obstructing official business and failure to stop after
accident. He raises one assignment of error for our review:
The jury determination in lower court was against the
manifest weight of the evidence.
Finding no merit to his assignment of error, we affirm.
History and Factual Background
On April 29, 2016, a Cuyahoga County Grand Jury indicted
Jackson on one count of aggravated burglary, in violation of
R.C. 2911.11(A)(2); one count of tampering with evidence, in
violation of R.C. 2921.12(A)(1); one count of obstructing
official business, in violation of R.C. 2921.31(A); one count
of failure to stop after accident, in violation of R.C.
4549.03(A); and one count of intimidation of crime victim or
witness, in violation of R.C. 2921.04(B)(1).
The case proceeded to a trial by jury where the following
evidence was presented in relation to the counts for
obstructing official business and failure to stop after
On December 5, 2015, at around 3:00 a.m., Detectives Hathaway
and Janusczak were patrolling the streets when their marked
patrol car was struck by another vehicle as they crossed
through the intersection of Payne Avenue and East 40th
Street. Detective Hathaway testified he was the driver and
Detective Janusczak was the passenger. He stated that their
patrol car was "T-boned on the rear passenger side,
" the passenger-side air bag deployed, and that after
being struck by the vehicle, they "spun around, and
maybe about twelve to eighteen feet spun backwards toward the
railroad tracks." He testified that he did not recall
anything about the vehicle that struck them and that after
hitting them, the vehicle did not stop. On cross-examination,
both detectives stated that they did not see who was driving
Both officers testified that they sustained injuries as a
result of the motor vehicle accident. After being hit,
Detective Janusczak testified that he broadcast the incident
over the police radio, stating that they were struck by a
"blue or black Dodge Ram." Detective Janusczak
testified that they had to call a tow truck to transport the
patrol car off the scene because two of the vehicle's
wheels were caved in and many of the vehicle's parts were
knocked off and were lying in the surrounding area.
After examining both detectives, the state called Officer
Dotson, who responded to the scene of the accident. Officer
Dotson testified that she discovered a license plate and part
of a vehicle's bumper in the road. She stated that she
believed it to be from the vehicle that came into contact
with the detectives' patrol car and radioed in the
license plate's information to obtain the related
registration information. Officer Dotson testified that the
dispatcher informed her that the license plate was registered
to a pickup truck, that the owner of the truck lived in the
Fourth District, and that she would have to ...