Court of Appeals of Ohio, First District, Hamilton
Criminal Appeal From: Hamilton County, TRIAL NO. B-1602231,
Court of Common Pleas
T. Deters, Hamilton County Prosecuting Attorney, and Scott M.
Heenan, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for
William F. Oswall Jr., for Defendant-Appellant.
Defendant-appellant James Wofford appeals the decision of the
trial court sentencing him to prison on his conviction for
involuntary manslaughter. In one assignment of error, Wofford
argues that the trial court improperly declined to consider
community control in sentencing him to prison, and so he must
be resentenced. We overrule Wofford's assignment of error
and affirm the decision of the trial court.
Wofford pled guilty to one count of involuntary manslaughter
under R.C. 2903.04(A), a felony of the first degree, and an
accompanying firearm specification under R.C. 2941.145. He
was sentenced to 11 years in prison for the
involuntary-manslaughter charge and three years for the
firearm specification, to be served consecutively.
R.C. 2929.14(B)(1)(a)(ii) mandates that a prison term of
three years be imposed for offenses in which the offender had
a firearm on his person or under his control while committing
the offense and displayed, brandished, or indicated that he
possessed the firearm, or used it to facilitate the offense.
The trial court was required to impose a separate three-year
prison term for the firearm specification.
Wofford does not take issue with the mandatory three-year
firearm-specification sentence, but argues that he was
eligible for community control on the
involuntary-manslaughter conviction, and that the trial judge
erred by failing to consider community control as a possible
sentence for that offense.
Because the trial court was required to impose a prison
sentence for the involuntary-manslaughter conviction,
Wofford's assignment of error has no merit.
Generally, a prison term is presumed for a first- or second-
degree felony, but the trial court can impose community
control if it makes certain findings. R.C. 2929.13(D).
Nevertheless, R.C. 2929.13(F) requires a trial court to
impose a prison sentence under certain circumstances.
State v. Johnson, 116 Ohio St.3d 541, 2008-Ohio-69,
880 N.E.2d 896, ¶ 9; See R.C. 2929.01(X)(1)
(defining a mandatory prison term as including one that must
be imposed under R.C. 2929.13(F)(1) to (8) or (12) to (22)).
Similarly, this court has held that R.C. 2929.13(F)(6)
requires that a prison sentence be imposed for any first- or
second- degree felony when the defendant has a prior first-
or second- degree felony conviction. State v.
Kinney, 2018-Ohio-404, 105 N.E.3d 603, ¶ 23 (1st
R.C. 2929.13(F)(8) requires the court to impose a prison term
for any felony offense, except a violation of R.C. 2923.12
(carrying a concealed weapon), during which the offender had
a firearm on or about his person or under his control while
committing the felony, with respect to a portion of the
sentence imposed pursuant to R.C. 2929.14(B)(1)(a).
Involuntary manslaughter under R.C. 2903.04(A) is a felony of
the first degree subject to a maximum sentence of 11 years.
R.C. 2929.14(A)(1). As noted above, the firearm specification
in R.C. 2929.14(B)(1)(a)(ii) requires that the offender had a
firearm on his person or under his control while committing
the offense and ...