FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE AKRON MUNICIPAL COURT COUNTY OF
SUMMIT, OHIO CASE No. 2018 CRB 07054
BELFANCE, Director of Law, GERTRUDE E. WILMS, Chief
Prosecutor, and BRIAN D. BREMER, Assistant Director of Law,
S. KODISH, Director, and SUSAN MANOFSKY, Summit County Legal
Defender, for Appellee.
DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY
A. TEODOSIO, PRESIDING JUDGE
Appellant, the City of Akron, appeals an order of the Akron
Municipal Court that granted J.B.'s motion to dismiss the
criminal charge against him. This Court reverses.
The facts underlying this appeal are not disputed. On August
8, 2018, J.B. suffered a drug overdose. The police officers
who responded to the 911 call regarding J.B. discovered a
crack pipe on his person. J.B. was charged with possession of
drug paraphernalia in violation of Akron Municipal Code
138.28. J.B. moved to dismiss the charge, arguing that he was
immune from prosecution under R.C. 2925.11(B)(2)(b)(i)
because the police found the crack pipe when they responded
to his need for medical assistance related to an overdose.
The trial court granted the motion, concluding that
"protecting a 'qualified individual' * * * from
prosecution for drug possession, but not protecting that
person from prosecution for the instruments used to take the
drugs[, ] results in an absurd and unreasonable
consequence." The City appealed.
TRIAL COURT COMMITTED REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT GRANTED
APPELLEE'S MOTION TO DISMISS.
The City's assignment of error argues that the trial
court erred by granting J.B.'s motion to dismiss because
the unambiguous language of R.C. 2925.11(B)(2) limits
immunity to minor drug possession offenses. This Court
Under R.C. 2925.11(B)(2)(b), a "qualified
individual" cannot be "arrested, charged,
prosecuted, convicted, or penalized" for a minor drug
possession offense if:
(i) The evidence of the obtaining, possession, or use of the
controlled substance or controlled substance analog that
would be the basis of the offense was obtained as a result of
the qualified individual seeking the medical assistance or