Court of Appeals of Ohio, Twelfth District, Clermont
CRIMINAL APPEAL FROM CLERMONT COUNTY COURT OF COMMON PLEAS
Case No. 2018CR000114
Vincent Faris, Clermont County Prosecuting Attorney,
Katherine Terpstra, for appellee
Stephen Haynes, Clermont County Public Defender, Robert F.
Benintendi, for appellant
1} Appellant, Regina Perry, appeals her conviction
in the Clermont County Court of Common Pleas for permitting
2} Perry leased an apartment on Mount Carmel Tobasco
Road in Clermont County Ohio and allowed her son, Tyler
Liming, to live with her in the apartment. While living with
his mother, Liming began operating a drug trafficking
business in which he used the "dark web" to order
narcotics and other drugs. Those drugs were then delivered to
the apartment and purchased by Liming's customers.
Oftentimes, Liming's customers would use the recently
purchased drugs with Liming in the apartment.
3} In October 2016, an officer responded to a 911
call reporting a "nonbreather, possible overdose"
at the apartment. When the officer arrived, Liming was
attempting to perform CPR on an unresponsive individual,
Brendann Payne, who was lying on the apartment's living
room floor. Shortly thereafter, Payne flatlined at the
apartment and was unable to be saved by the paramedics. After
an autopsy was performed, it was concluded that Payne died
from the ingestion of alcohol and a synthetic opiate known as
U-47700. It was further determined that Payne died within
minutes of ingesting the drug.
4} While responding to the 911 call, the officer
noticed an abandoned safe near the apartment. Because the
safe was unclaimed, the officer opened the safe and
discovered documentation and property belonging to Liming.
The safe also contained an unlabeled bottle of pills, which
were stamped as Percocets, but were later identified as
U-47700. The safe was transported to the police department
and the following day, one of Liming's friends attempted
to claim the safe. At that time, Liming's friend was
interviewed and ultimately disclosed information that
prompted further investigation into Liming.
5} Around the same time as Payne's death, Perry
was having difficulties living with Liming, including issues
arising from his drug abuse. As a result, Perry began
searching for an apartment closer to her boyfriend and began
staying with him approximately three nights a week.
Thereafter, on January 30, 2017, Perry terminated her lease,
and she and Liming moved out of the apartment.
6} In September 2017 Liming was arrested on charges
related to Payne's death. Specifically, Liming was
indicted for providing the U-47700 substance to Payne and for
committing a felony which ultimately resulted in Payne's
death. In March 2018, Liming pled guilty to one count of
involuntary manslaughter and one count of aggravated
trafficking in drugs. As a result of his plea, the Clermont
County Court of Common Pleas found Liming guilty of violating
R.C. 2903.04(A), a felony of the first degree, and R.C.
2925.03(A)(2), a felony of the third degree. Liming was also
charged in a second case with engaging in a pattern of
corrupt activity, which he also pled guilty to. As a result
of that plea, Liming was found guilty of violating R.C.
2923.32(A)(1), a felony of the first degree.
7} In February 2018, shortly before Liming pled
guilty, Perry was indicted for permitting drug abuse in
violation of R.C. 2925.13(B). According to the bill of
particulars, the state alleged Perry was "the lessee,
occasional occupant, and a person having custody or control
of [the] apartment" and Perry allowed the apartment to
be used by her son, Liming, and those associated with him for
the "trafficking in a variety of drugs including * * *
L.S.D., alprazolam, hashish, and U-47700." The bill of
particulars further indicated that Perry knew the apartment
was used by Liming's associates and customers to ingest
drugs after they were purchased, and this use resulted in
8} Perry pled not guilty to the charges and the
matter proceeded to a jury trial. The state presented eight
witnesses in its case-in-chief, and Perry did not testify or
present any witnesses in her defense. The jury returned a
guilty verdict, and the trial court sentenced Perry to 120
days in jail and four years of community control. Perry now
appeals, raising one assignment of error.
9} Assignment of Error No. 1:
10} THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN ENTERING A FINDING OF
GUILTY BECAUSE THE JURY'S VERDICT WAS AGAINST ...