Court of Appeals of Ohio, Seventh District, Mahoning
Criminal Appeal from the Court of Common Pleas of Mahoning
County, Ohio Case No. 2016 CR 1349
Paul J. Gains, Mahoning County Prosecutor and Atty. Ralph M.
Rivera, for Plaintiff-Appellee
Katherine E. Rudzik, for Defendant-Appellant.
BEFORE: Cheryl L. Waite, Gene Donofrio, Carol Ann Robb,
OPINION AND JUDGMENT ENTRY
Appellant Steven K. Timmons (also referred to as
"Timmins") appeals an April 2, 2018 judgment entry
convicting him of various crimes after he entered an
"Alford" plea in accordance with North
Carolina v. Alford, 400 U.S. 25, 91 S.Ct. 160, 27
L.Ed.2d 162 (1970). Appellant argues that the trial court
failed to conduct the heightened analysis that is required
when a defendant enters an Alford plea. Appellant
additionally argues that he did not stipulate to a finding of
guilt and the state failed to present evidence of his guilt,
thus his plea is against the manifest weight of the evidence.
In accordance with State v. Redmond, 7th Dist.
Mahoning No. 17 MA 0068, 2018-Ohio-2778, Appellant's
arguments have merit and the judgment of the trial court is
reversed. As such, Appellant's plea is vacated and the
matter is remanded for further proceedings consistent with
and Procedural History
On April 27, 2017, a superseding indictment was filed
charging Appellant with: one count of engaging in a pattern
of corrupt activity, a felony of the first degree in
violation of R.C. 2923.32(A)(1), (B); thirteen counts of
burglary, felonies of the second degree in violation of R.C.
2911.12(A)(2), (C); six counts of theft, felonies of the
third degree violation of R.C. 2913.02(A)(1), (B)(1)(4); four
counts of receiving stolen property, felonies of the fourth
degree in violation of R.C. 2913.51 (A), (C); two counts of
receiving stolen property, felonies of the fifth degree in
violation of R.C. 2913.51(A), (C); three counts of receiving
stolen property, misdemeanors of the first degree in
violation of R.C. 2913.51(A), (C); one count of possession of
cocaine, a felony of the fifth degree in violation of R.C.
2925.11(C)(4), (A); and one count of possession of heroin, a
felony of the fifth degree in violation of R.C.
On January 23, 2018, Appellant entered an Alford
plea to the following charges: one count of engaging in a
pattern of corrupt activity; seven counts of burglary; two
counts of theft; one count of receiving stolen property
(felony of the fourth degree); one count of receiving stolen
property (felony of the fifth degree); and one count of
possession of cocaine. The remaining charges were dismissed.
On April 2, 2018, the trial court sentenced Appellant as
follows: eight years of incarceration for engaging in a
pattern of corrupt activity, five years for each count of
burglary, thirty-six months for each count of theft, eighteen
months for each count of fourth degree receiving stolen
property, one year for a fifth degree count of receiving
stolen property, and one year for possession of cocaine. The
burglary, receiving stolen property, theft, and possession
sentences were ordered to run concurrently but consecutively
to the sentence for engaging in a pattern of corrupt
activity, for an aggregate total of thirteen years of
incarceration. The trial court credited Appellant with 485
days of time served. This timely appeal followed.
OF ERROR NO. 1
PLEA WAS NOT ENTERED KNOWINGLY, INTELLIGENTLY AND VOLUNTARILY
BECAUSE THE TRIAL COURT FAILED TO CONDUCT THE HEIGHTENED
INQUIRY REQUIRED WHEN ACCEPTING A PLEA PURSUANT TO
OF ERROR NO. 2
TRIAL COURT'S FINDING OF TIMMINS GUILTY, PURSUANT TO AN
ALFORD PLEA WAS AGAINST THE MANIFEST WEIGHT OF THE
EVIDENCE BECAUSE THE PROSECUTION DID NOT MAKE A SEPARATE
PRESENTATION OF EVIDENCE WHEN TIMMINS MADE NO STIPULATION AND