The State ex rel. Mark Russell, Relator,
Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, Respondent.
MANDAMUS ON OBJECTION TO THE MAGISTRATE'S DECISION
Russell, pro se.
Yost], Attorney General, and Ina Avalon, for respondent.
INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL POSTURE
1} Relator, Mark Russell, an inmate at the Warren
Correctional Institution, brought this original action solely
against the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction
("ODRC"), requesting that this Court order ODRC to
hold a use of force hearing about allegations concerning
actions taken by a corrections officer against Russell when
he was incarcerated at the Pickaway Correctional Institution.
(Apr. 6, 2017 Petition at ¶ 1, 4-6.) Russell also
alleged in his petition that the corrections officer in
question was "from the Noble Correctional
Institution" but was participating in a
"shakedown" at the Pickaway Correctional
Institution. Id. at ¶ 4-5. Russell alleged in
his petition that this Court has jurisdiction under Article
IV, Section 3(B)(1)(b) of the Ohio Constitution. Id.
at ¶ 3.
2} We referred Russell's mandamus petition to a
magistrate in accordance with Civ.R. 53(C) and Loc.R. 13(M)
of the Tenth District Court of Appeals. (Apr. 24, 2017
Entry.) On May 8, 2017, ODRC moved to dismiss this action,
arguing that it should have been brought in the county where
the events occurred-in this case, Pickaway County. (May 8,
2017 Mot. to Dismiss at 4-5.) ODRC argued that we lacked
jurisdiction because of the incorrect venue of the action.
3} On June 30, 2017, after the parties had fully
briefed ODRC's motion to dismiss, the magistrate issued a
decision, including findings of facts and conclusions of law
(appended to this decision). The magistrate found that
Russell was attempting to compel either Pickaway Correctional
Institution (where the alleged action occurred) or Warren
Correctional Institution (where Russell is currently
incarcerated), to conduct a use of force hearing based on
this alleged incident. As those locations and the relevant
parties to the case are outside this appellate district, the
magistrate determined that we lack territorial jurisdiction
over this mandamus action and recommended that we dismiss the
4} Russell filed a timely objection to the
magistrate's decision. (July 13, 2017 Obj.) In that
objection, he disputed the magistrate's jurisdictional
finding. Id. Russell also observed that his mandamus
action was brought against ODRC, which is located within the
territorial boundaries of this appellate district.
5} Civ.R. 53(D)(4)(b), concerning matters heard by
magistrates, provides "[w]hether or not objections are
timely filed, a court may adopt or reject a magistrate's
decision in whole or in part, with or without modification. A
court may hear a previously-referred matter, take additional
evidence, or return a matter to a magistrate." Under
this rule there are two different standards of review:
If no timely objections are filed, the court may adopt a
magistrate's decision, unless it determines that there is
an error of law or other defect evident on the face of the
Civ. R. 53(D)(4)(c).
If one or more objections to a magistrate's decision are
timely filed, the court shall rule on those objections. In
ruling on objections, the court shall undertake an
independent review as to the objected matters to ascertain
that the magistrate has properly ...