IN THE MATTER OF: MINOR SETTLEMENT FOR TRAVIS FISCHER
Appeal from the Court of Common Pleas, Probate Division, Case
Appellee CINDY M. O'NEIL ASSISTANT PROSECUTOR
Appellant TRAVIS FISCHER, PRO SE LEBANON CORR. INSTITUTION
JUDGES: Hon. John W. Wise, P. J., Hon. Patricia A. Delaney,
J., Hon. Craig R. Baldwin, J.
Appellant Travis Fischer appeals the decision of the Morgan
County Court of Common Pleas, Probate Division, which denied
his motion to vacate a 2010 judgment entry directing certain
settlement funds to be applied to outstanding court costs and
other fees in three other cases. Appellee is the State of
Ohio. The relevant procedural facts leading to this appeal
are as follows.
In April 2008, appellant, a minor at the time, was injured as
a passenger in an automobile accident. Appellant's
attorney for his subsequent personal injury claim filed an
application to settle a minor's claim (R.C. 2111.05 and
2111.18) in the Morgan County Probate Court on June 12, 2009.
According to said application and other probate court
documents, Progressive Insurance Corporation made a
settlement offer of $12, 500.00. On June 29, 2009, the
probate court issued an "entry approving
settlement," ordering inter alia the net amount
of $4, 102.86 to be deposited in the name of appellant.
In July 2009, the Morgan County Grand Jury indicted appellant
(common pleas case number 09CR0032) on three counts of
aggravated murder, one count of rape, one count of aggravated
robbery, and several other counts. On November 4, 2009,
appellant entered pleas of guilty to aggravated murder, rape,
aggravated burglary, grand theft (motor vehicle), and arson.
On the same day, he was sentenced inter alia to
thirty years to life in prison.
On March 16, 2010, the Morgan County Probate Court (case
number 09PMS0059) issued a judgment entry further addressing
the aforementioned settlement funds. The court first found
that the First National Bank of McConnelsville was holding
the sum of $4, 115.11 in a savings account in appellant's
name, which were due to be released to him upon the age of
majority. The court then found that appellant owed
outstanding court costs and/or indigent attorney fees in
three other cases, including 09CR0032, supra. It
further ordered as follows:
Therefore, the court hereby orders and directs that the First
National Bank of McConnelsville, Ohio release Savings Account
No. xxxxxx in the amount of $4, 115.11 plus accrued interest,
and that said account shall be disbursed in two separate
checks, one being payable to the Morgan County Juvenile Court
in the amount of $1, 012.71 in payment of costs and attorney
fees in Case No. 09JB0028 and 09JA0080, and the second, in
the amount of the remaining balance to the Clerk of Courts of
the Common Pleas Court of Morgan County as a payment on costs
due and owing in Case No. 09CR0032. The Clerk of Courts of
the Common Pleas Court is directed to apply said sum first to
court costs, secondly, to court fines, and the remaining
balance to be applied to incarceration fees.
"Journal Entry," March 16, 2010, at 1.
On March 25, 2019, more than nine years later, appellant
filed a pro se motion to vacate the aforesaid
judgment entry ordering disbursement of funds.
The probate court issued a judgment entry on May 8, 2019,
finding the "matter [had] been previously decided"