The State ex rel. DeShawn Johnson, Relator,
Judge David E. Cain, Respondent.
PROCEDENDO/MANDAMUS ON OBJECTIONS TO THE MAGISTRATE'S
DeShawn Johnson, pro se.
1} Relator, DeShawn Johnson, commenced this original
action requesting that this court issue a writ of
procedendo/mandamus ordering respondent, the Honorable David
E. Cain, judge of the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas,
to issue a final appealable order journalizing Johnson's
2} Pursuant to Civ.R. 53(C) and Loc.R. 13(M) of the
Tenth District Court of Appeals, this court referred the
matter to a magistrate. As the magistrate noted, Johnson did
not pay the filing fee, nor did he, at the time of filing the
action, file a statement of the balance of his inmate account
for the previous six months certified by an institutional
cashier. Under R.C. 2969.25(C), both an affidavit of waiver
and the statement of the account balance are mandatory filing
requirements. Because Johnson failed to satisfy the mandatory
filing requirements of R.C. 2969.25(C), the magistrate, in a
January 10, 2019 decision, recommended sua sponte dismissal
of the action.
3} Johnson filed objections to the magistrate's
decision pursuant to Civ.R. 53(D)(3)(b), arguing the
magistrate erroneously concluded he failed to file an
affidavit of indigency and a statement of his inmate account.
Thus, Johnson argues this court should liberally construe the
filing requirements of R.C. 2969.25 and conclude he satisfied
4} As the Supreme Court of Ohio has held,
"[t]he requirements of R.C. 2969.25 are mandatory and
failure to comply with them requires dismissal of an
inmate's complaint." State ex rel. Hall v.
Mohr, 140 Ohio St.3d 297, 2014-Ohio-3735, ¶ 4,
citing State ex rel. Washington v. Ohio Adult Parole
Auth., 87 Ohio St.3d 258, 259 (1999). Thus, both the
affidavit of waiver and the certified statement of account
"must be filed at the time the complaint is filed, and
an inmate may not cure the defect by later filings."
Id., citing Fuqua v. Williams, 100 Ohio
St.3d 211, 2003-Ohio-5533, ¶ 9. See also Morris v.
Franklin Cty. Court of Common Pleas, 10th Dist. No.
05AP-596, 2005-Ohio-6306 (noting "[c]ompliance with R.C.
2969.25 is mandatory and failure to comply subjects an
inmate's action to dismissal").
5} Here, although Johnson filed a purported
affidavit of indigency at the time he filed his complaint in
mandamus/procedendo, the statement of account balance he
filed was not certified by the institutional cashier. Because
it was not certified by the institutional cashier, the
statement of his inmate account balance for the previous six
months did not satisfy the mandatory filing requirements of
R.C. 2969.25(C). Additionally, while Johnson objects to the
magistrate's statement that he did not file an affidavit
of indigency, the document he filed did not set forth the
amount in the inmate's account for each of the preceding
six months as certified by the institutional cashier,
rendering his affidavit of indigency deficient under R.C.
2969.25(C). Although Johnson provided a certified copy of his
statement of inmate account balance along with his
objections, Johnson cannot cure the defect in his initial
filing through subsequent filings included with his
objections. Accordingly, we adopt the magistrate's
decision as our own, including the magistrate's findings
of fact and conclusions of law.
6} Having adopted the magistrate's decision as
our own, we overrule Johnson's objections to the
magistrate's decision. In accordance with the
magistrate's decision, we sua sponte dismiss
Johnson's request for a writ of mandamus/procedendo.
overruled; case dismissed.
and DORRIAN, JJ., concur.