FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS COUNTY OF
SUMMIT, OHIO CASE Nos. CR-2016-08-2979, CR-2015-03-0794,
R. HICKS, Attorney at Law, for Appellant.
BEVAN WALSH, Prosecuting Attorney, and JACQUENETTE S. CORGAN,
Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for Appellee.
DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY
Jamie Armbruster appeals from the judgment of the Summit
County Court of Common Pleas. This Court affirms.
This is a consolidated appeal of three separate criminal
cases: CR-2015-03-0794 ("First Case"),
CR-2015-09-2902 ("Second Case"), and
CR-2016-08-2979 ("Third Case"). In the First Case,
a grand jury indicted Ms. Armbruster on counts for possession
of heroin in violation of Revised Code Section 2925.11(A),
(C)(6), illegal use or possession of drug paraphernalia in
violation of Section 2925.14(C)(1), and possessing drug abuse
instruments in violation of Section 2925.12. Ms. Armbruster
moved for intervention in lieu of conviction
("IILC"), which the trial court granted. While in
the IILC program, a grand jury indicted Ms. Armbruster in the
Second Case on the same three charges as the First Case. The
trial court terminated Ms. Armbruster from the IILC program
and reinstated the First Case. Ms. Armbruster then pleaded
guilty to all of the charges in the First and Second Cases.
The trial court sentenced Ms. Armbruster to 24 months of
community control on each of the six counts, which it ordered
to be served concurrently. The trial court also indicated
that, if Ms. Armbruster violated the conditions of her
community control, it would impose a total of 19 months of
imprisonment for the First and Second Case.
Less than one year later, a grand jury indicted Ms.
Armbruster in the Third Case on the same three charges. Ms.
Armbruster pleaded guilty to the possession-of-heroin count,
and the State dismissed the remaining two charges. The trial
court sentenced her to 24 months of community control. The
trial court advised Ms. Armbruster that if she violated the
conditions of her community control, it could impose a prison
term of 12 months, which it would run consecutively to the
19-month sentence from the First and Second Case, for a total
of 31 months of imprisonment.
Ms. Armbruster later pleaded guilty to community-control
violations in the First and Second Case. As a result, the
trial court extended her community control for an additional
two years. Shortly thereafter, all three cases were
re-assigned to a new trial judge. After that, Ms. Armbruster
pleaded guilty to community-control violations in all three
cases, and the new trial judge modified her sentence in each
case to 90 days in the Summit County Jail, to be served
concurrently with each other. The trial court also extended
her community control for another nine months.
The cases were then re-assigned to another (third) trial
judge, and the State moved to set aside Ms. Armbruster's
modified sentences. In doing so, the State argued that each
case contained a conviction of at least one felony of the
fifth degree, which is punishable by 6-12 months in prison.
It argued that the prior trial judge, therefore, erred by
imposing a 90-day jail term. The trial court granted the
State's motion, holding that the prior orders modifying
Ms. Armbruster's sentences were nullities because the
trial court lacked jurisdiction to modify its sentences. Ms.
Armbruster has appealed, raising one assignment of error for
this Court's review.
TRIAL COURT ERRED IN GRANTING THE STATE'S MOTION TO SET