Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Fairfield
from the Fairfield County Municipal Court, Case No.
Plaintiff-Appellee MITCHELL R. HARDEN City of Lancaster Law
Director & Prosecutor's Office Assistant City
Defendant-Appellant NICHOLAS FAGNANO Burkett & Sanderson,
W. Scott Gwin, P.J. Hon. Craig R. Baldwin, J. Hon. Earle E.
Zakary Groves appeals the decision of the Fairfield County
Municipal Court accepting his plea of guilty contending that
he did not enter the plea knowingly, intelligently and
voluntarily. Appellee is the State of Ohio.
OF FACTS AND THE CASE
The facts leading up to the charges filed against Appellant
are not pertinent to the resolution of the Appeal and are
therefore omitted from this opinion.
Appellant was initially charged with a lengthy list of
offenses in different cases. The charges included one count
of Falsification (R.C. 2921.13(A)(3)), two counts of Criminal
Trespass (R.C. 2911.21(A)(1) and (A)(3) respectively),
Criminal Damaging (R.C. 2909.06(A)(1)), Criminal Trespass
(R.C. 2911.21(A)(4)), Aggravated Menacing (R.C. 2903.21), one
count of Aggravated Trespass (R.C. 2911.211(A)), one count of
Criminal Damaging (R.C. 2909.06(A)(1)), and one count of
Menacing (R.C. 2903.22). He entered a plea of not guilty to
all charges and subsequently changed his plea to guilty to
one count of Aggravated Trespass and one count of Criminal
Trespass with the balance of the charges dismissed as part of
a plea agreement.
At the sentencing hearing, the trial court reviewed the
change of plea form and questioned Appellant regarding his
understanding of the rights he was waiving by entering his
guilty plea. Appellant engaged in an exchange with the trial
court and he was represented by competent counsel, who
confirmed that he had advised Appellant of the consequences
of a guilty plea.
Appellant's initial attempt to appeal was dismissed as
being time barred. He filed a motion for leave to file a
delayed appeal, Appellee did not object, and we granted his
request. He then filed an appeal with a sole assignment of
"I. THE TRIAL COURT COMMITTED HARMFUL ERROR IN ACCEPTING
THE GUILTY PLEA OF THE DEFENDANT-APPELLANT."