Matthew F. Loesch, Portsmouth, Ohio, for Appellant.
Kelley, Adams County Prosecutor, and Kris D. Blanton,
Assistant Adams County Prosecuting Attorney, West Union,
Ohio, for Appellee.
DECISION AND JUDGMENT ENTRY
P. Smith, Presiding Judge
Jeannie Prater appeals the judgment entry of the Adams County
Common Pleas Court, entered July 18, 2018. Prater was
convicted upon entering pleas to one count of aggravated
trafficking in drugs, methamphetamine, in the vicinity of a
juvenile and one count of aggravated trafficking in drugs,
methamphetamine. On appeal, Prater challenges her aggregate
sentence of 54 months as an abuse of the trial court's
discretion. Upon review, the record clearly demonstrates that
the trial court properly considered all sentencing statutes
and Prater's sentence is within the statutory range.
Thus, we find no merit to Prater's argument. Accordingly,
we overrule Prater's sole assignment of error and affirm
the judgment of the trial court.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
On January 16, 2018, Jeannie Prater (hereinafter
"Appellant") was indicted by the Adams County Grand
Jury on two counts of aggravated trafficking in drugs,
violations of R.C. 2925.03(A)(1), and felonies of the third
degree. The allegations were as follows:
Count One: On or about December 6 and December 8,
2017, in Adams County Ohio, Appellant did knowingly sell or
offer to sell Methamphetamine, a schedule II controlled
substance, in an amount less than bulk.
SPECIFICATION: The Grand Jurors further find and specify that
the offense was committed in the vicinity of a juvenile.
Count Two: On or about between December 13 and
December 15, 2017, in Adams County, Ohio, [Appellant], did
knowingly sell or offer to sell Methamphetamine, a schedule
II controlled substance, in an amount that equals or exceeds
the bulk amount, but is less than five times the bulk amount.
On January 19, 2018, Appellant pled not guilty to both counts
and the court set a cash bond. The parties engaged in
discovery. Appellant filed a motion to reduce bond which the
trial court initially denied. On May 9, 2018, however, the
trial court modified the bond to a recognizance bond.
On June 6, 2018, Appellant entered guilty pleas on both
counts. The trial court ordered a pre-sentence investigation
and the case was set for sentencing at a later date. At the
plea hearing, the trial court asked Appellant to describe the
events which occurred in both counts. As to Count One,
"I um, met the father of my daughter at Walmart parking
lot. *** Um, Brent Fischer.***And prior to that he had called
me and asked me to go to his friend's house and pick some
Meth up for him and bring it to him, so I did and sold it to
him.***My daughter was with me.*** She was eight at the
As to Count Two, Appellant explained:
"Brent called me and asked me if I could get him an
eight-ball um, of Meth and I got it from the same place and I
took it to him. ***At his residence in
Manchester…***3.8 grams.***I just sold it and
left.***I made $50.00 off of it.
The record indicates that Detective Sam Purdin met with a
confidential informant who reported on both occasions that
Appellant offered to sell him Methamphetamine. According to
Appellant, she was "set up" by Brent Fischer. At
the plea hearing, the trial court engaged in a lengthy
colloquy with Appellant regarding the circumstances
underlying the indictment and the circumstances underlying a
new misdemeanor Appellant had allegedly committed while
awaiting disposition of the indictment.
By July 9, 2018, the Adams County Probation Department had
notified the court that Appellant had violated the terms and
the conditions of her bond as related to a pill count. The
trial court reverted her previously modified recognizance
bond to a cash or surety bond and Appellant was placed into
the custody of the Adams County Sheriff Department.
At Appellant's sentencing on July 18th, the
parties discussed the bond violation. The probation
department's drug testing indicated Appellant was
negative for a prescribed drug, Buprenorphine, which should
have been in her system, based on the date of the refill and
the number of pills missing. The trial court concluded
Appellant was not using the drug in the manner prescribed.
When Appellant was given time to address the court, she
stated as follows:
"I just, I want to say that first I want to apologize
for, for this and I know I hurt a lot of people. I hurt the
community, I hurt my family and feels like the last years of
dark time in my life I want to move, I want to move on and do
good things for the community. I want to work, I almost had,
you know got to start work. It took, I was out a little over
thirty days and I filled out applications as soon as you
released me and it took, I went to two interviews and got
hired. So, right I just feel like I needed more time. I want
to do the right thing, I want to, I want to work and get into
a good treatment center and be there for my kids. I don't
want to be in there [sic] lives right now because I don't
feel like I'm ready. I want to get better and, and
eventually be the mom that I've always been their whole
The trial court imposed a stated prison term of thirty months
on Count One and a stated prison term of twenty-four months
on Count Two. The sentences were ordered to be served
consecutively, for a total of fifty-four months. Appellant
was given credit for time served. The trial court commented:
"Ms. Prater uh, you and every other person that uh,
trafficking Methamphetamine in this, in this county has
absolutely gutted us. You have destroyed us, you have
overwhelmed us. And every person you were selling drugs to
uh, they were ruining the lives of their children because you
can't name me one person that's a good parent
that's using Methamphetamine. But you were disseminating
it and now I learn that we were even providing food stamps
for you so that you didn't have to work, you could just
do cash flow with Methamphetamine. ***You did this in the
vicinity, your little girl is sitting in the back seat while
your [sic] doing a drug transaction. And then if that's
not enough then uh, that doesn't phase you, you go out
and get uh, more than bulk and less than five times bulk
amount and make another transaction."
This timely appeal followed. Where pertinent, additional
facts are set forth below.
ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR
"I. THE TRIAL COURT ABUSED ITS DISCRETION BY FAILING TO
PROPERLY CONSIDER AND APPLY THE SERIOUSNESS AND RECIDIVISM
FACTORS TO THE APPELLANT AT ...