Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

City of East Cleveland v. Harris

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth District, Cuyahoga

June 6, 2019

CITY OF EAST CLEVELAND, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
ANITA HARRIS, Defendant-Appellant.

          Criminal Appeal from the East Cleveland Municipal Court Case No. 18 TRC 01592

          Willa M. Hemmons, East Cleveland Law Director, and Heather McCollough, Assistant Law Director, for appellee.

          Mark A Stanton, Cuyahoga County Public Defender, and Robert Blanshard McCaleb, Assistant Public Defender, for appellant.

          JOURNAL ENTRY AND OPINION

          EILEEN T. GALLAGHER, PRESIDING JUDGE

         {¶ 1} Defendant-appellant, Anita Harris, appeals her convictions and claims the following error:

          The trial court erred in rendering a guilty verdict without requesting or receiving a factual basis for conviction.

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

         I. Facts and Procedural History

         {¶ 3} Harris was charged in the East Cleveland Municipal Court with one count of driving while under the influence of alcohol ("DUI") in violation of East Cleveland Ordinances ("E.C.O.") 333.01(A)(1), one count of driving without a seatbelt in violation of E.C.O. 337.27, and one count of failing to drive in one lane in violation of E.C.O. 331.08. Harris pleaded no contest to the DUI and seatbelt charges, and the government nolled the remaining charge. The court accepted her no contest pleas and found her guilty on both counts. The court then sentenced her to 180 days in jail, suspended 177 days of the jail term, and gave Harris the opportunity to complete a three-day driving course in lieu of serving three days in jail. The court also sentenced Harris to 12 months of probation, imposed $430 in fines, and ordered her to pay court costs.[1]

         {¶ 4} After receiving her sentence, Harris asked the court if she could make a statement regarding her case. With the court's permission, Harris informed the court that on the day of her arrest, she only had one drink and refused the breathalyzer test because the "drink was still fresh on [her] breath." (Tr. 9.) The court advised Harris that Ohio law penalizes people who refuse the breathalyzer. Thereafter, the proceedings were concluded. Harris now appeals her convictions.

         II. Law and Analysis

         {¶ 5} In her sole assignment of error, Harris argues the trial court committed reversible error when it rendered guilty verdicts without any factual basis for the convictions.

         {¶ 6} R.C. 2937.07 governs the court's action when taking guilty or no contest pleas in misdemeanor cases and states, in relevant part:

A plea to a misdemeanor offense of "no contest" or words of similar import shall constitute an admission of the truth of the facts alleged in the complaint and that the judge or magistrate may make a finding of guilty or not guilty from the explanation of the circumstances of the offense. If the offense to which the accused is entering a plea of "no contest" is a minor misdemeanor, the judge or magistrate is not required to call for an explanation of the circumstances of ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.