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Case Update

My faithful companion Lexis advises me that the Ohio courts have decided some 340 cases since I last did a courts update two weeks ago.  Fortunately, about a hundred of them are "unpublished" decisions of the Supreme Court, where they simply announce that they're not going to hear a particular appeal.  Happened to one of my cases, which we'll talk about next week. 

Meanwhile, on to the courts of appeals:

Criminal.  3rd District holds that defendant can be convicted of violating protective order, even if petitioner invited him onto property... Fact that witnesses were under influence of drugs -- presumably when they observed crime, not when they testified -- does not render them incompetent under Evid.R. 601 and 602, 2nd District holds.... 7th District rules that trial judge violated defendant's right to allocution by immediately proceeding to sentencing after jury verdict, vacates sentence... 3rd District holds it was error to admit preliminary hearing transcript, one subpoena not "reasonable effort" to procure her appearance...

Civil.  8th District holds that insurance company cannot proceed against tortfeasor on subrogation claim if tortfeasor had no knowledge of insurance payments to plaintiff... Termination of shared parenting agreement does not require showing of changed circumstances, rules 12th District... 10th District rules that mortgage company waived right to insist on arbitration for lendee's claims by first filing foreclosure... 1st District holds that savings statute not available where plaintiff never demanded or attempted service of first complaint... Pallet in aisle open and obvious hazard, says 10th District in affirming summary judgment for store... Trial judge's ex parte communications with jury presumed substantive and prejudicial in absence of contrary evidence, warranting new trial, holds 9th District...

The joys of being a cop.  The facts from State v. Donkers, in which the 11th District reversed the defendant's conviction for not having her baby in child restraints:  after being followed by the officer, with his lights and sirens going, for three miles,

appellant exited the turnpike and entered a line at a toll booth. The trooper quickly approached the vehicle. He ordered appellant to turn off the vehicle and hand over her keys, which she did only after multiple requests. She voluntarily explained that she had been breastfeeding her six-month old, which she urged was lawful based upon legal research she performed before making the trip. . .  At first, appellant would not display identification or reveal her name. She cited the trooper to United States Supreme Court case law dealing with lack of police authority to demand identification where no criminal investigation was occurring. . . Finally, she handed over an apparently homemade identification card/affidavit displaying her picture, her name and a Pennsylvania address.

The defendant represented herself in both the trial and appellate courts.  There's a surprise, huh?

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