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Case Update

One day a week here, I do a quick summary of interesting cases decided during the past week in the Ohio courts.  I still haven't figured out a name for it.  I used "Weekly Update" for a while, but that sort of reminded me of Chevy Chase sitting at a desk while Garrett Morris yelled, "IN THE OHIO SUPREME COURT LAST WEEK..." in the background.  (Speaking of which, they've recently released a CD collection of Saturday Night Live's 1st year.  Interesting to watch how the show developed over that season, from a perspective of thirty years later.) 

Anyway, from here on out, I've decided to call this "Case Update."  If you want to check back updates, you can click on the "Potpourri" category, or you can put "case update" in the search box, and it'll pull up all of these posts, and you can scroll through them to your heart's content.  Remember, our motto at The Briefcase:  We read the cases so you don't have to.

We've covered the major Supreme Court decisions from last week, so let's get to the courts of appeals.

Criminal.  1st District holds that Cincinnati ordinance prohibiting use of motor vehicle to facilitate drug sales, with maximum $500 fine, was a "civil" penalty which did not pose double jeopardy bar to drug abuse prosecution... 2nd District finds basis for stop, no basis for frisk in drug case, reverses denial of motion to suppress... 3rd District holds that aggravated arson and arson are not allied offenses, defendant can be sentenced on both... 5th District reaffirms its earlier opinions that double jeopardy and res judicata do not prohibit court from bringing defendant back and advising him of post-release controls where it didn't do that at original sentencing... Where defendant offered to sell two ounces of crack cocaine, but substance was actually counterfeit, he can be convicted of only 5th degree drug trafficking, says 6th District...

Civil.  2nd District finds that City of Dayton is "uninsured" for purposes of UM/UIM coverage, plaintiff who was injured in collision with city-owned vehicle can collect from his insurer... Plaintiff is supposed to meet friend in parking lot, goes to wrong parking lot, gets stuck in elevator, fractures wrist trying to get out, sues parking lot, 9th District says he's a trespasser, only duty of lot is to refrain from willfully and wantonly injuring him... 8th District holds that court can't enforce arbitration clause in contract without holding an evidentiary hearing on enforceability and unconscionability...

Only the Lonely.  The 1st District tossed out a prenuptial agreement involving a Ukrainian "mail-order" bride in Azarova v. Schmitt.  The most significant legal aspect of the case is the holding that the trial court need not defer to the magistrate's factual findings, but can reassess the credibility of the witnesses on his own, despite the fact that he didn't observe them testify.  The facts of the case certainly bolster the argument for maintaining the sanctity of the institution of marriage against the onslaught of the homosexual agenda:  the victim -- er, wife -- met with her husband-to-be and his lawyer for three hours less than a week prior to the wedding to go over the agreement, where "Schmitt's attorney allowed Azarova to read the agreement with the use of an English-to-Russian dictionary." 

Ain't love grand?

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