Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth District, Cuyahoga
Criminal Appeal from the Cuyahoga County Court of Common
Pleas Case No. CR-17-623902-A
Michael C. O'Malley, Cuyahoga County Prosecuting
Attorney, and Steven N. Szelagiewicz, Assistant Prosecuting
Attorney, for appellee.
V. Pagano, for appellant.
JOURNAL ENTRY AND OPINION
A. GALLAGHER, JUDGE.
1} High on PCP and driving in excess of 100 m.p.h. down a
city street, defendant-appellant Kevin Gunnels hit and killed
two innocent people, Adrian Stradford and Connie Anderson.
Gunnels pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated vehicular
homicide, both felonies of the first degree. Gunnels also
pleaded guilty to three misdemeanors - two counts of criminal
damaging related to the vehicles involved in the collision
and one count of driving while under the influence of alcohol
or drugs. For each aggravated vehicular homicide count, the
trial court sentenced Gunnels to 8 years in prison and
ordered consecutive service for a total term of 16 years. The
court imposed concurrent sentences for the misdemeanor counts
that subsumed into the larger sentence.
2} At the sentencing hearing, the court also imposed sentence
on Gunnels in a second case which was pending at the time of
the fatal accident. In that case, Gunnels had pleaded guilty
to one count of felony domestic violence after punching a
woman in the face. The court sentenced Gunnels to one year in
prison and ordered that sentence to run consecutive to the
16-year term in the other case for a total sentence of 17
years in prison.
3} On appeal, Gunnels raises three assignments of error,
arguing the trial court erred by imposing consecutive
sentences,  by denying his request for a mitigation of
penalty report and by failing to calculate his jail-time
credit. For the reasons that follow, we affirm Gunnels'
sentence and find no error in the court's denial of his
request for a mitigation report, however, we reverse and
remand the case for the court to determine and journalize his
4} In the first assignment of error, Gunnels challenges the
imposition of consecutive sentences. He concedes that the
trial court made the appropriate findings to impose
consecutive sentences, but argues that the record does not
support those findings. We disagree.
5} R.C. 2929.14(C)(4) requires a trial court to make specific
findings before imposing consecutive sentences and to
incorporate those findings into its sentencing journal entry.
State v. Bonnell, 140 Ohio St.3d 209,
2014-Ohio-3177, 16 N.E.3d 659, at syllabus. A trial court is
not, however, required to articulate reasons in support of
its decision to impose consecutive sentences. Id.
"[A]s long as the reviewing court can discern that the
trial court engaged in the correct analysis and can determine
that the record contains evidence to support the findings,
consecutive sentences should be upheld." Id. at
6} Where the trial court made the requisite consecutive
sentencing findings, R.C. 2953.08(G)(2) requires this court
to affirm an order of consecutive service unless we
"clearly and convincingly" find that the record
does not support the court's findings in support of
consecutive sentences. State v. Venes,
2013-Ohio-1891, 992 N.E.2d 453, ¶ 21 (8th Dist.)
("This is an extremely deferential standard of
7} Review of the record reflects that the high-speed crash
and resulting deaths was not an isolated incident of criminal
behavior. As previously stated, Gunnels committed these
crimes while he had a pending felony domestic violence case.
Moreover, we note that Gunnels did not have a valid
driver's license at the time of the crash, nor at any
other time in his life. The prosecutor indicated Gunnels did
have a valid temporary driver's license at one point, but
that it was suspended in 1993.
8} Beyond these offenses, Gunnels also has an extensive
criminal history. Before the court imposed consecutive
sentences, it discussed Gunnels' previous DUI and
domestic violence convictions. It further outlined his