from the Stark County Court of Common Pleas, Case No.
Plaintiff-Appellee JOHN D. FERRERO Stark County Prosecuting
Attorney KRISTINE BEARD Assistant Prosecuting Attorney
Defendant-Appellant BERNARD L. HUNT
JUDGES: Hon. W. Scott Gwin, P.J Hon. William B. Hoffman, J.
Hon. Patricia A. Delaney, J.
Appellant Brandon Malik Fields appeals the judgment entered
by the Stark County Common Pleas Court convicting him of
robbery (R.C. 2911.02(A)(2)) and assault (R.C. 2903.13(A))
and sentencing him to an aggregate term of incarceration of
six years. Appellee is the state of Ohio.
OF THE FACTS AND CASE
Diana Johnson met Sean Jefferson through an online dating
service in early May, 2018. They frequently talked and hung
out together thereafter. Diana attended a party at her
cousin's duplex on May 23, 2018. She called Sean to ask
him to come to the party in the 3100 block of Kalahari St. in
Canton, Ohio. She asked him to bring her a Black and Mild
cigarette and to park behind the duplex, near a dumpster.
Sean arrived between 6:30-7:00 p.m., and parked where
instructed. Diana was outside waiting for him. He gave her
the Black and Mild, which she smoked outside. She told Sean
smoking was not permitted at the party. While standing
outside, Sean saw a man approaching from the left, and two
men approaching from the other direction. Sean had a bad
feeling about the situation.
According to Diana, two men, Kevin Proctor and Appellant, who
she knew as "Mozzy," were at the party and
approached her and Sean outside. Proctor asked Sean for a
cigarette. Sean told Proctor he didn't smoke. Proctor
then asked for a "buck." Tr. 132. Sean said he
didn't have a buck, but he had hundreds, referring to
money. Proctor and Sean started to walk to Sean's car,
when Proctor threw Sean to the ground. Appellant kicked Sean
several times, and Proctor punched Sean. When Diana ran to
kick Proctor, Appellant picked her up and slammed her to the
ground. She got up and ran to her mother's house. Before
she left, she saw keys in Proctor's hand.
According to Sean's recollection of the evening, one of
the men who approached him outside asked for money. Sean
replied he didn't have any money. The man told Sean he
needed a "band," or one thousand dollars. Tr. 175.
Sean walked to his car to get a crow bar for protection. As
he was walking, he was thrown to the ground and kicked by two
men - one wearing boots, and one wearing gym shoes. The men
kicked Sean multiple times. He did not recognize any of the
men. He lost consciousness, and woke up as the men were
attempting to use the fingers of his left hand to unlock his
cell phone. While lying on the ground, he saw Diana walk
away. After the men left in his car, Sean got up and walked
toward the road. A girl stopped to help him. He next woke up
in the back of an ambulance. The men who assaulted him took
his wallet, cell phone, keys, and rental vehicle. Sean was
not able to identify Appellant nor Proctor.
Detective Joseph Pileggi of the Canton Police Department was
assigned to the case. In speaking with Sean, he learned Sean
believed Diana set him up for the robbery. Detective
Pileggi's attempts to contact Diana were unsuccessful.
Det. Pileggi issued a warrant for Diana's arrest for
complicity to commit robbery, and she was arrested by a U.S.
Marshall in June of 2018.
Diana identified Proctor to Det. Pileggi by name. She told
the detective the other man went by the name "Mozzy
Mac" on Facebook, and his first name was Brandon. Det.
Pileggi circulated a photograph of the man Diana knew as
Mozzy around the police department, and a patrol officer
identified the man as Appellant. Diana identified photos of
Sean's rental vehicle was recovered two weeks later. Two
juveniles were arrested in ...