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State v. Goins

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Ninth District, Wayne

August 5, 2019

STATE OF OHIO Appellee
v.
CHRISTOPHER L. GOINS Appellant

          APPEAL FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE WAYNE COUNTY MUNICIPAL COURT COUNTY OF WAYNE, OHIO CASE No. 2017 TR-C 006608.

          PATRICK L. BROWN, Attorney at Law, for Appellant.

          DANIEL R. LUTZ, Prosecuting Attorney, and ANDREA D. UHLER, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for Appellee.

          DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY

          JULIE A. SCHAFER JUDGE.

         {¶1} Defendant-Appellant, Christopher Goins, appeals the decision of the Wayne County Municipal Court denying his motion to suppress. We affirm.

         I.

         {¶2} On July 1, 2017, at approximately 1:35 a.m., the Wayne County Communications Dispatch ("WCC") issued a dispatch to Dispatcher Lloyd of the Ohio State Highway Patrol. The WCC dispatch informed Dispatcher Lloyd that a citizen informant had called to report a possible intoxicated driver leaving the Econo Lodge in Wayne County and heading toward the city of Wooster in a green Ford truck. Dispatcher Lloyd relayed this information to Trooper Ondick who was on patrol in the area of the Econo Lodge. Trooper Ondick headed to the location he believed he would find the truck. Upon observing a green Ford F-150 in the vicinity, Trooper Ondick initiated a traffic stop of the vehicle. Mr. Goins was identified as the driver of the vehicle and was ultimately charged with operating a vehicle under the influence in violation of R.C. 4511.19(A)(1)(a) and R.C. 4511.19(A)(1)(d). Mr. Goins entered a plea of not guilty and the matter proceeded through the pretrial process.

         {¶3} Mr. Goins eventually filed a motion to suppress the evidence obtained as a result of the traffic stop, alleging that Trooper Ondick did not have reasonable suspicion to stop his vehicle. Following a hearing, the trial court issued a judgment entry determining that Trooper Ondick had reasonable suspicion to stop Mr. Goins' vehicle and that the State had sufficiently demonstrated that the facts precipitating the dispatch justified a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity validating a brief stop of Mr. Goins' vehicle.

         {¶4} Mr. Goins ultimately changed his plea to no contest. The trial court accepted his plea, found him guilty, and sentenced him to six months in jail and a ten-year license suspension. Mr. Goins thereafter filed this timely appeal, raising one assignment of error for our review.

         II.

         Assignment of Error

         The trial court erred by denying Mr. Goins' motion to suppress, as there was no reasonable suspicion to stop Mr. Goins' vehicle.

         {¶5} In his sole assignment of error, Mr. Goins raises two arguments.[1] Mr. Goins' arguments include the contention that the trial court erred when it denied his motion to suppress evidence because the trial court erred when it admitted the citizen informant's 9-1-1 call as evidence. Mr. Goins also argues that that the trial court erred when it denied his motion to suppress because (1) neither Trooper Ondick nor Dispatcher Lloyd had sufficient knowledge of the facts precipitating the stop; (2) the State did not present sufficient evidence to sustain the trial court's finding of reasonable suspicion; and (3) that even if "there was reasonable suspicion to stop the driver of the 'green Ford truck' described by the Wayne County Sheriffs Office, Trooper Ondick did not have reasonable suspicion that Mr. Goins' vehicle was the one that he was actually dispatched to locate." We disagree on all points.

         A. ...


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