The State ex rel. Mekria Neguse, Relator,
Judge Dale A. Crawford, Respondent.
PROHIBITION ON RESPONDENT'S MOTION TO DISMISS
Neguse, pro se.
O'Brien, Prosecuting Attorney, and Benjamin D. Humphrey,
1} "Mekria Neguse," whose name seems to
appear on various other court documents as "Mekuria
Neguse" and "Mekuira Neguse," filed with this
court a "Complaint for Writ of Prohibition"
relating to a trial court Nunc Pro Tunc Entry from February
3, 1995 that had denied Mr. Neguse's petition for
postconviction relief. That entry, as attached by Mr. Neguse
to his complaint here, recited that "[a]fter hearing
testimony of witnesses and arguments from the plaintiff and
defendant, the Court finds the defendant's claim of
ineffective assistance of counsel is without merit."
2} Pursuant to Local Rule 13(M)(1) of the Tenth
District Court of Appeals and Civil Rule 53, the matter was
referred to a magistrate of this court. In the fullness of
time, respondent Judge Stephen McIntosh of the Franklin
County Common Pleas Court, as the successor to named
respondent Judge Dale Crawford, filed a motion to dismiss the
complaint as not compliant with the requirements of R.C.
2969.25 and as barred by res judicata. On January 29, 2019,
the magistrate issued a decision recommending that "this
court should grant respondent's motion and dismiss
relator's complaint." App'x at ¶ 25. Having
recited Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, the
magistrate observed that Mr. Neguse "continues to
challenge the court's disposition of his June 29, 1994
motion [for postconviction relief]. The magistrate finds this
question has been raised and answered by both the trial court
and this court, and relator is not entitled to a writ of
prohibition challenging the trial court's
determination." Id. at ¶ 24.
3} With Mr. Neguse not having timely filed any
objections to the magistrate's decision, the matter was
submitted to this panel on October 8, 2019. Under Civil Rule
53(D)(4)(c), "[i]f 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 magistrate's decision."
4} We have reviewed the decision in the context of
the record of this case and find no such error of law or
other evident defect. Nonetheless, a brief recap may be
5} This matter does not appear to relate directly to
the murder for which Mr. Neguse was convicted in 1990.
See App'x at ¶ 12; see also State v.
Neguse, 71 Ohio App.3d 596 (10th Dist.1991). Rather, it
relates to his 1989 conviction by plea for drug abuse and
assault. See App'x at ¶ 19; State ex
rel. Neguse v. Franklin Cty. Court of Common Pleas ("SER
Neguse"), 10th Dist. No. 17AP-755, 2019-Ohio-564,
6} Earlier this year, this court dismissed Mr.
Neguse's request for a writ of mandamus seeking
"written Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, and
Post-Conviction Transcript of Proceeding of Evidentiary
Hearing relative to the dismissal of his Petition for Relief
after Judgment filed in Respondent's Court rendered on
June 29, 1994." SER Neguse, 2019-Ohio-564, at
¶ 5. That decision quoted from another Neguse matter,
reciting that "[a] hearing on the postconviction motion
was held June 29, 1984, and the trial court overruled
[relator's] motion. [Relator] appealed the denial of his
postconviction motion, and on April 12, 1995, this court sua
sponte dismissed the appeal [as untimely]. * * * On September
7, 1999, [relator] filed a motion for delayed appeal
regarding the trial court's denial of his 1993
postconviction motion. This court denied the motion in
December 1999. On January 5, 2000, [relator] again filed a
notice of appeal of the trial court's denial of his
postconviction relief. This court sua sponte dismissed the
appeal" as untimely. Id. at ¶ 11, quoting
State v. Neguse, 10th Dist. No. 17AP-449,
2018-Ohio-1163, ¶ 10, 12.
7} We observed that "for nearly 30 years"
and in a variety of fashions, Mr. Neguse has challenged his
1989 drug abuse and assault convictions on the ground that
the trial court there lacked jurisdiction because he had been
a juvenile; that "relator had the opportunity to file an
appeal of this court's decision" denying a motion on
those grounds as contrary to the evidence, and that he had
not done so; and that "this question has been raised and
answered by both the trial court and this court and relator
is not entitled to a writ of mandamus ordering the trial
court to provide him with additional findings of fact and
conclusions of law." SER Neguse, 2019-Ohio-564,
at ¶ 23 (adding that Mr. Neguse had not shown that he
was entitled to a second copy of the trial court hearing
transcript at state expense). Mr. Neguse did not appeal from
this earlier 2019 decision, either.
8} In this latest action, Mr. Neguse again seeks a
writ, now characterized as a "Writ of Prohibition,"
to compel the trial court "to make findings of fact and
conclusions of law * * *." Complaint at Prayer for
Relief. (He does attach an "Affidavit of Prior Civil
Actions" that refers to his 2017 mandamus attempt but
neglects to provide information relating, for example, to
appeal efforts in 17AP-449, 17AP-450, and 17AP-755, or a
Supreme Court appeal designated as case number 2018-0714,
omissions that would constitute grounds for dismissal
pursuant to R.C. 2969.25(A)(2). Compare State ex rel.
McCree v. Ohio Adult Parole Auth., 10th Dist. No.
03AP-802, 2004-Ohio-4860, (citations omitted)). A writ of
prohibition is designed to stop an unauthorized exercise of
judicial or quasi-judicial power that is about to occur.
See, e.g., State ex rel. Polo v. Cuyahoga Cty. Bd. of
Elections, 74 Ohio St.3d 143, 144-45 (1995); State
ex rel. Roush v. Montgomery, 10th Dist. No. 17AP-791,
2018-Ohio-2098, ¶ 4, citing State ex rel. Jones v.
Suster, 84 Ohio St.3d 70, 73 (1998). It is not designed
to provide another avenue for pursuing a writ of mandamus
that has already been turned away. Mr. Neguse has not made
out the elements required for a writ of prohibition. The
magistrate's decision is correct in noting here, too,
that Mr. Neguse's challenge "has been raised and
answered by both the trial court and this court," and
that he "is not entitled to a writ of prohibition
challenging the trial court's determination."
App'x at ¶ 24.
9} With no timely objection to the magistrate's
decision having been filed, and because no error of law or
other defect is evident on its face, we adopt the findings of
fact and conclusions of law of that decision.
Respondent's motion to dismiss is ...