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State v. Rivers

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Seventh District, Mahoning

June 10, 2019

STATE OF OHIO, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
JOHNNY RIVERS, Defendant-Appellant.

          Criminal Appeal from the Youngstown Municipal Court of Mahoning County, Ohio Case No. 17 CRB 192Y

          Jeffrey Moliterno, Assist. Prosecutor, for Plaintiff-Appellee

          Jan Mostov, for Defendant-Appellant.

          BEFORE: David A. D'Apolito, Cheryl L. Waite, Carol Ann Robb, Judges.

          OPINION AND JUDGMENT ENTRY

          D'APOLITO, J.

         {¶1} Appellant Johnny Rivers appeals the imposition of a thirty-day jail sentence, a $100.00 probation fee, and one year of intensive probation by the Youngstown Municipal Court after he entered guilty pleas and was convicted of four violations of Youngstown General Property Maintenance Ordinance 546.04, misdemeanors of the third degree.

         {¶2} Appellant's sole assignment of error, filed pursuant to this Court's directive in State v. Cruz-Ramos, 7th Dist. No. Mahoning 17 MA 0077, 2018-Ohio-1583, is ineffective assistance of counsel. Appellant contends that the trial court may have imposed a lesser sentence, but for his trial counsel's failure to request that the sentencing hearing be continued for more than thirty days in order to provide additional time to Appellant to remediate the offending property. Because Appellant relies upon suppositions rather than facts to support his claim, his sole assignment of error is overruled and the judgment entry of the trial court is affirmed.

         ORDINANCE 546.04

         {¶3} The relevant portions of Ordinance 546.04 read, in their entirety:

(1) SANITATION. All exterior property and premises shall be maintained free from an unreasonable accumulation of waste, trash, garbage and rubbish. In determining whether such accumulation is unreasonable, the Code Official or his or her designee shall consider whether it is unsightly, has an unpleasant odor, or is otherwise detrimental to the health, safety and welfare of the area in which it is found. Where an accumulation is specifically allowed under another provision of this Code, on a temporary basis, it shall not be considered unreasonable.
(7) ACCESSORY STRUCTURES. All accessory structures, including detached garages, fences and walls, shall be maintained structurally sound and in good repair.
(10) SWIMMING POOLS. Swimming pools shall be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition, and in good repair.
(20) ROOFS AND DRAINAGE. All roofs shall be maintained weather tight and shall be equipped with gutters and downspouts connected to a public storm sewer. The roof and flashing shall be sound, tight and not have defects that admit rain. Roof drainage shall be adequate to prevent dampness or deterioration in the walls or interior portion of the structure. Roof drains, gutters and downspouts shall be maintained in good repair and free from obstructions. Roof water shall not be discharged in a manner that creates a public nuisance.

         PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         {¶4} On February 1, 2017, a summons and four complaints were issued by the trial court, charging Appellant with violations of the City's general property maintenance ordinance. Supporting documentation, which was prepared by City Code Official Abigail Beniston and attached to the complaints, reads, in its entirety:

On Wednesday, January 25, 2017, I went out to the property located at 104 Jacobs Road to perform an inspection. Upon arriving I saw a fence with missing and broken sections that did not match in color. Weeds throughout the property in excess of eight inches. Dilapidated swimming pool in complete disrepair. The roof on the front portion of the structure is in disrepair with missing shingles. There is rubbish collected throughout the front yard and driveway.

(1/27/17 Memorandum, p. 1).

         {¶5} Appellant was unrepresented at his arraignment on March 10, 2017, and did not waive his right to a speedy trial. As a ...


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