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State v. Barnard

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eleventh District, Ashtabula

June 10, 2019

STATE OF OHIO, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
SHAWN GREGORY BARNARD, a.k.a. SHAWN G. BARNARD, Defendant-Appellant.

          Civil Appeals from the Ashtabula County Court of Common Pleas, Case Nos. 2016 CR 00126, 2016 CR 00218, 2016 CR 00224, and 2016 CR 00225.

          Nicholas A. Iarocci, Ashtabula County Prosecutor, and Shelley M. Pratt, Assistant Prosecutor, Ashtabula County Courthouse, (For Plaintiff-Appellee).

          Shawn Gregory Barnard, pro se, Lake Erie Correctional Institution (Defendant-Appellant)

          OPINION

          MATT LYNCH, J.

         {¶1} Defendant-appellant, Shawn Gregory Barnard, appeals the dismissal of his petition for postconviction relief by the Ashtabula County Court of Common Pleas. For the following reasons, we affirm the decision of the court below.

         {¶2} On September 26, 2016, Barnard pled guilty to the following charges in four consolidated criminal cases: Illegal Manufacture of Drugs, a felony of the second degree in violation of R.C. 2925.04(A) (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00126); Aggravated Trafficking in Drugs, a felony of the fourth degree in violation of R.C. 2925.03(A)(1) and (C)(1)(a) (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00218); Illegal Manufacture of Drugs, a felony of the second degree in violation of R.C. 2925.04(A) (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00224); and Complicity to Interference with Custody, a felony of the fourth degree in violation of R.C. 2919.23(A)(1) and (D)(2) and R.C. 2923.03(A)(2) (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00225).

         {¶3} On October 6, 2016, the trial court imposed on Barnard a stipulated aggregate sentence of fifteen years, comprised of the following consecutive prison terms: six years for Illegal Manufacture of Drugs (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00126); eighteen months for Aggravated Trafficking in Drugs (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00218); six years for Illegal Manufacture of Drugs (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00224); and eighteen months for Complicity to Interference with Custody (Ashtabula C.P. No. 2016 CR 00225).

         {¶4} Barnard's convictions and sentence were affirmed on direct appeal in State v. Barnard, 11th Dist. Ashtabula Nos. 2017-A-0009, 2017-A-0010, 2017-A-0011, and 2017-A-0012, 2018-Ohio-695.

         {¶5} On June 11, 2018, Barnard filed a Petition to Vacate or Set Aside Judgment of Conviction of Sentence, based on the alleged ineffective assistance of trial counsel. Barnard claimed that he advised his trial counsel in the underlying cases that Ashtabula Prosecuting Attorney, Nicholas Iarocci, had defended him in 1999 against a charge of Fleeing (Ashtabula Muni. No. 99 CR A 00058). During the course of that representation, Barnard shared with Iarocci "several things that were personal and trusted to be kept between attorney and client." Affidavit of Shawn G. Barnard. "Due to personal information known through [the] attorney-client privilege [in the 1999 case], Chief Prosecutor Iarocci [led] a personal crusade to convict and enhance any and all penalties to its maximum level [in the present cases]." Petition to Vacate at 5. According to Barnard, trial counsel was ineffective for failing to have Iarocci removed as prosecutor for conflict of interest.

         {¶6} On June 18, 2018, the State of Ohio filed a Motion to Dismiss Petition for Postconviction Relief.

         {¶7} On June 22, 2018, the trial court issued a Judgment Entry, dismissing the Petition on the grounds that "the doctrine of res judicata bars Defendant from raising

these arguments in the present petition": Defendant states that Prosecutor Nicholas Iarocci was once his trial attorney. He believes he was treated unfairly by the Prosecutor's Office because of this relationship. However, Defendant, who was represented at all times, did not raise this issue at trial or on appeal. At the time he entered a plea of guilty Defendant was aware that Nicholas Iarocci once represented him. Defendant also knew that Nicholas Iarocci was his former attorney [when he] filed his appeal. In other words, it is not newly discovered evidence. Any argument based upon Nicholas Iarocci's former representation of Defendant needed to be raised at trial or on direct appeal.

         {¶8} On July 13, 2018, Barnard filed Notices of Appeal. On appeal, he raises the following assignments of error:

         {¶9} "[1.] The trial court abused its discretion in its application of the doctrine of res judicata to Barnard's timely filed petition for post-conviction relief pursuant to O.R.C. ยง 2953.21 thus violating Barnard's rights under the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the ...


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