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State v. Woodum

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Third District, Logan

June 25, 2018

STATE OF OHIO, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
v.
DOMINIQUE B. WOODUM, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.

          Appeal from Logan County Common Pleas Court Trial Court No. CR 17-02-0031

          Samantha L. Berkhofer for Appellant

          Alice Robinson-Bond for Appellee

          OPINION

          WILLAMOWSKI, P.J.

         {¶1} Defendant-appellant Dominique B. Woodum ("Woodum") brings this appeal from the judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Logan County sentencing him to a prison term of eight years. Woodum claims that the trial court erred by failing to properly advise him and by not considering the statutory factors before imposing a maximum sentence. For the reasons set forth below, the judgment is affirmed.

         {¶2} On or around November 30, 2016, Woodum provided drugs to the victim. Doc. 40. Soon after taking the drugs, the victim fell unconscious and suffered from labored breathing. Id. The victim thereafter died due to a drug overdose that included Fentanyl. Id. Woodum and two others removed the victim's body from the apartment and hid it along with the victim's truck. Id. The missing body and truck were not found for three days. Id.

         {¶3} On February 14, 2017, the Logan County Grand Jury indicted Woodum on four counts: 1) Involuntary Manslaughter in violation of R.C. 2903.04(A), a felony of the first degree; 2) Tampering with Evidence in violation of R.C. 2921.12(A)(1), a felony of the third degree; 3) Abuse of a Corpse in violation of R.C. 2927.01(A), a misdemeanor of the second degree; and 4) Possession of Cocaine in violation of R.C. 2925.11(A), a felony of the fifth degree. Doc. 2. Woodum entered pleas of not guilty to all counts. Doc. 10. A superseding indictment was filed on April 11, 2017. Doc. 20. The new indictment added a repeat violent offender specification to count one. Id. Woodum entered a plea of not guilty to the specification at a second arraignment. Doc. 35.

         {¶4} On July 11, 2017, a second superseding indictment was filed. Doc. 42. The new indictment contained the following counts: 1) Involuntary Manslaughter in violation of R.C. 2903.04(A), a felony of the first degree; 2) Involuntary Manslaughter in violation of R.C. 2903.04(A), a felony of the first degree; 3) Corrupting Another with Drugs in violation of R.C. 2925.02(A)(3), a felony of the second degree; 4) Tampering with Evidence in violation of R.C. 2921.12(A)(1), a felony of the third degree; 5) Abuse of a Corpse in violation of R.C. 2927.01(A), a misdemeanor of the second degree; 6) Possession of Cocaine in violation of R.C. 2925.11(A), a felony of the fifth degree; and 7) Obstructing Justice in violation of R.C. 2921.32(A)(5), a felony of the fifth degree. Id. The first two counts contained repeat violent offender specifications. Id. An amended bill of particulars was then filed on August 3, 2017. Doc. 51.

         {¶5} On November 14, 2017, the trial court held a change of plea hearing. Doc. 108. Pursuant to a plea agreement, Woodum agreed to plead guilty to Count 3, Corrupting Another with Drugs. Id. at Ex. A. In exchange for the guilty plea, the State agreed to dismiss the remaining six counts and the repeat violent offender specifications. Id. The trial court discussed the change of plea with Woodum and eventually determined that it was voluntarily being made. Doc. 108. The trial court then accepted the guilty plea and found Woodum to be guilty. Id. The State then dismissed all remaining charges. Id. The trial court proceeded immediately to sentencing. Id. The trial court indicated that it had considered the record, the oral statements of Woodum, the victim impact statements, the pre-sentence investigation report from Montgomery County, and the statutory guidelines set forth in R.C. 2929.11 and R.C. 2929.12. Id. The trial court then sentenced Woodum to the maximum prison term of eight years. Id. No fine was imposed and the costs of prosecution and attorney fees were waived. Id. Woodum appeals from this judgment. Doc. 120. On appeal, Woodum raises the following assignments of error.

         First Assignment of Error

         Whether the trial court erred by failing to inform the defendant of all of his 2929.19 requirements?

         Second Assignment of Error

         Whether the trial court erred by failing to make a clear record of his considerations of 2929.11 and 2929.12 before sentencing the defendant to a maximum sentence?

         {¶6} In the first assignment of error, Woodum claims that the trial court erred by failing to inform Woodum that he cannot "ingest or be injected with a drug of abuse" and must submit to random drug testing while in prison as set forth in R.C. 2929.19(B)(2)(f). This Court has addressed a similar argument in State v. Mason, 3d Dist. Marion No. 9-05-21, 2006-Ohio-1998. In Mason, the defendant argued that the trial court erred by failing to notify him that he would be subject to drug testing in prison. The trial court in Mason failed to notify the defendant of the requirements about ingesting drugs and possible drug testing. This Court held that since the purpose of the statute was to facilitate drug testing of prisoners, not to benefit the defendant, the failure to notify the defendant was not reversible error. Id. at ¶ 17. This determination has also been reached by many other districts. See also State v. Mavrakis, 9th Dist. Summit No. 27457, 2015-Ohio-4902; State v. Jones, 1st ...


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