Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Ashland
from the Ashland County Court of Common Pleas, Juvenile Court
Division, Case No. 20142293
Plaintiff-Appellee CHRISTOPHER R. TUNNELL Ashland County
Prosecuting Attorney By: COLE F. OBERLI Assistant Prosecuting
Defendant-Appellant ABIGAIL CHRISTOPHER
JUDGES: Hon. W. Scott Gwin, P.J. Hon. Craig R. Baldwin, J.
Hon. Earle E. Wise, J.
C.B. appeals the Ashland County Common Pleas Court, Juvenile
Division's decision to classify him as a Tier II Sex
Offender. Appellee is the State of Ohio.
OF FACTS AND THE CASE
This matter was before this court in In re C.B., 5th
Dist. Ashland No. 15-COA-027, 2016-Ohio-4779, and while we
remanded the case for redetermination of Appellant's
Juvenile Offender Registration status, the facts remain
unchanged, so we restate the facts and the case as described
within that case.
On October 23, 2014, E.O., a nine year-old student in Ashland
City Schools, met with Officer Kim Mager of the Ashland
Police Department. Kris Manley, a Principal in the Ashland
City School District, called the Ashland Police Department to
report E.O. alleged she had been the victim of repeated
sexual assaults by two neighbors, C.B., and his brother, M.B.
Interview with Detective Mager
Detective Mager first interviewed E.O. on October 23, 2014,
when she was in the fourth grade. E.O. understood the purpose
of the interview was to discuss her neighbors, C.B. and M.B.
E.O. informed Officer Mager M.B., her fifteen year old
neighbor, touched her vaginal area, which she referred to as
her "bottom." E.O. told Officer Mager M.B. and his
brother, C.B., touched her vaginal area behind the shed at
the rear of M.B.'s residence. E.O. related both M.B. and
C.B. inserted their fingers inside her vagina on numerous
occasions. E.O. said M.B. digitally penetrated her "five
to ten times ... I'm not sure, but he does it a
lot." She said the incidents with M.B. almost always
ended with his fingers inside her vagina. She said the
incidents always occurred behind the shed.
E.O. estimated the incidents began in first grade, about
three years prior, putting her at age six. She averred M.B.
and C.B. both touched her vagina on the outside of her
clothes and put their hands up her shirt.
E.O. described an incident during which S.B., M.B. and
C.B.'s mother, witnessed M.B. touching her. She stated
the incident occurred "right before school
started," she believes in late August, 2014, when she
was playing in the backyard. E.O. said M.B. told her to
"come here," and while they were trying to
"spy" on someone, M.B. was "touching me with
his fingers inside me." C.B. was "watching to make
sure nobody saw it." E.O. stated at the same time, S.B.
appeared behind the shed and saw her with her pants and
panties down and M.B. sitting in front of her. M.B. had his
fingers inside her. E.O. stated S.B. saw M.B. with his
fingers inside her because "I was right there where she
looked and I saw her looking at me." S.B. yelled at
M.B., stating, "That's it! You're grounded and
you can't play with her anymore!
E.O. also described incidents during which M.B. and C.B.
attempted to take videos of her with their cell phones while
touching her vaginal area.
Detective Mager wrote a narrative summarizing her interview
Interview with Lieutenant Icenhour
On October 23, 2014, Lieutenant Joel Icenhour of the Ashland
Police Department met with C.B., a sixteen year-old student
at Ashland High School. Assistant Principal Jon Walter
removed C.B. from class and escorted him to his office, where
Lieutenant Icenhour was waiting. Principal Walter sat behind
the desk, while C.B. and Lieutenant Icenhour sat in two
chairs in front of Principal Walter. C.B. was told Lieutenant
Icenhour was there to talk to him, he was not under arrest,
he didn't have to talk to him if he didn't want to,
and he was free to leave. Principal Walter did not engage in
the interview, but remained present according to school board
policy. C.B. orally consented to the interview with
Lieutenant Icenhour informed C.B. he was at the school to
discuss allegations made by E.O. concerning inappropriate
sexual contact with C.B. and M.B. C.B. denied ever touching
E.O., but admitted E.O. would come close to him and "rub
up against him." He stated M.B. played often with E.O.
C.B. became emotionally upset during the interview, again
reiterating E.O. would sometimes get close to him and
"rub up against him." He stated he didn't like
it and would just walk away. He stated she would often walk
around showing her underwear. He repeatedly stated he would
never commit this type of offense because he feared the
consequences. He said he would never commit a sex offense as
it would impede his future plans, including going to the
military and a career in law enforcement. He also feared
As the interview concluded, Lieutenant Icenhour told C.B. to
take some time alone before returning to class. Lieutenant
Icenhour informed C.B. he intended to interview his brother,
M.B., and may need to speak with him again.
Interview with Lieutenant Icenhour
Lieutenant Icenhour then interviewed M.B. M.B. stated his
date of birth was September 28, 1999. Lieutenant Icenhour
told M.B. he had come to the high school to discuss
statements made by E.O. M.B. indicated he knew E.O., she was
his neighbor, and he knew her age. He stated they were
friends, and often played together, until he was told he
should not be playing with her because he was "in high
M.B. initially denied sexual conduct with E.O., but
eventually admitted to touching E.O.'s vaginal area
behind the shed. M.B. said C.B. acted as the look-out playing
basketball in front of the shed, while he engaged in the
touching. He denied C.B. ever witnessed him touching E.O.
When asked about C.B.'s role in the conduct, M.B.
initially indicated he knew nothing about any of the
incidents, but then described his role as the
"undergoer" or "side operation." He
stated E.O. told him C.B. touched her, but he did not talk to
C.B. about the incidents.
M.B. guessed C.B. engaged in touching E.O. "five or six
times" based on the accounts E.O. related to him.
Second Interview with Lieutenant Icenhour
Following his interview with M.B., Lieutenant Icenhour then
called C.B. back to the interview room. He informed C.B. he
had talked to M.B. and M.B. had indicated C.B. had a role in
M.B.'s conduct with E.O., and M.B. had indicated C.B. ...