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State v. Akhmedov

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Second District, Montgomery

September 6, 2019

STATE OF OHIO Plaintiff-Appellee
v.
MAVLYUD AKHMEDOV Defendant-Appellant

          Criminal Appeal from Common Pleas Court Trial Court Case No. 2018-CR-1465

          MATHIAS H. HECK, JR., by HEATHER N. JANS, Atty. Reg. No. 0084470, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Montgomery County Prosecutor's Office, Appellate Division, Montgomery County Courts Building, 301 West Third Street, Dayton, Ohio 45422 Attorney for Plaintiff-Appellee

          JOHN W. HERR, Atty. Reg. No. 0032207, 400 South Main Street, Middletown, Ohio 45044 Attorney for Defendant-Appellant

          OPINION

          WELBAUM, P.J.

         {¶ 1} Defendant-appellant, Mavlyud Akhmedov, appeals from his conviction in the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas after he pled guilty to one count of escape. In support of his appeal, Akhmedov contends that the trial court erred in accepting his guilty plea because it was preceded by a "patently flawed indictment process." Akhmedov also challenges the sufficiency of his guilty plea on grounds that the trial court failed to ensure that he understood the nature of the charge to which he pled guilty. For the reasons outlined below, the judgment of the trial court will be affirmed.

         Facts and Course of Proceedings

         {¶ 2} In Montgomery C.P. No. 2017-CR-3577, Akhmedov pled no contest to one count of failure to comply with the order or signal of a police officer in violation of R.C. 2921.331(B)/(C)(5). After accepting Akhmedov's no contest plea and finding him guilty of the failure to comply charge, the trial court sentenced Akhmedov to community control sanctions. As part of his community control sanctions, the trial court ordered Akhmedov to attend and complete drug intervention at the Secured Transitional Offender Program ("STOP"), which is a residential rehabilitation facility for offenders.

         {¶ 3} On March 30, 2018, the trial court issued an entry indicating that the Montgomery County Adult Probation Department had screened and approved Akhmedov for STOP. The entry further indicated that Akhmedov would begin his confinement at STOP on April 6, 2018, and remain at the facility for 90 days until July 5, 2018.

         {¶ 4} On June 6, 2018, the Montgomery County Grand Jury returned an indictment charging Akhmedov with one count of escape in violation of R.C. 2921.34(A)(1). The escape charge was brought under Montgomery C.P. No. 2018-CR-1465. The charge arose after Akhmedov escaped from his confinement at STOP. Specifically, the indictment alleged that Akhmedov, while "knowing that he was under detention or being reckless in that regard, did purposely break or attempt to break such detention, or purposely fail to return to detention, while being detained for the charge of failure to comply[.]"

         {¶ 5} On September 26, 2018, Akhmedov pled guilty to the escape charge as part of a negotiated plea agreement. The agreement required Akhmedov to plead guilty to escape and to withdraw all of his motions in three pending felony revocation proceedings. In exchange, the State agreed to jointly recommend a three-year prison term. The parties also agreed that the three-year prison term would be served consecutively to an 18-month prison term that Akhmedov received for aggravated possession of drugs in Montgomery C.P. No. 2018-CR-2127. The State further agreed to terminate Akhmedov's three pending revocation cases as unsuccessful. After accepting Akhmedov's guilty plea, the trial court sentenced Akhmedov to the prison term that was agreed upon by the parties.

         {¶ 6} Akhmedov now appeals from his escape conviction, raising a single assignment of error for review.

         Assignment of Error

         {¶ 7} Under his sole assignment of error, Akhmedov contends that the trial court erred in accepting his guilty plea to escape because his plea was preceded by a "patently flawed indictment process." Because of the allegedly flawed indictment, Akhmedov believes that his guilty plea and conviction should be vacated. Although Akhmedov stated in his reply brief that he was not challenging the knowing, intelligent, and voluntary nature of his guilty plea under Crim.R. 11(C), as part of his appellate brief, Akhmedov made certain arguments indicating that the trial court failed to ensure that he understood the nature of the escape charge to which he pled guilty. Accordingly, in the interest of justice, we will also review that issue as part of this appeal.

         {¶ 8} Akhmedov first contends that the trial court erred in accepting his guilty plea to escape due to an allegedly flawed indictment process. As noted above, the indictment at issue charged Akhmedov with ...


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