State v. Dean

[Cite as State v. Dean, 2019-Ohio-1391.] STATE OF OHIO ) IN THE COURT OF APPEALS )ss: NINTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COUNTY OF LORAIN ) STATE OF OHIO C.A. No. 18CA011290 Appellee v. APPEAL FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE DA'JON DEAN COURT OF COMMON PLEAS COUNTY OF LORAIN, OHIO Appellant CASE No. 17CR096378 DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY Dated: April 15, 2019 HENSAL, Judge. {¶1} Da’Jon Dean appeals his felonious-assault conviction from the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas. This Court affirms. I. {¶2} A grand jury indicted Mr. Dean on one count of felonious assault, one count of assault, and one count of aggravated riot based upon his involvement in a bar fight. Mr. Dean waived his right to a jury, and the case proceeded to a bench trial. {¶3} At trial, the State presented testimony from witnesses who explained that the fight broke out in the poolroom of the bar, that multiple people became involved, and that it was “just madness.” The victim in this case testified that he became involved because he was trying to help his friend who was being kicked and punched by several people. While trying to help his friend, the victim was struck in the head with a billiard ball, which caused his head to immediately swell. The victim testified that he suffered a concussion, that the impact caused a 2 chip in his skull, and that he still experiences headaches as a result of the injury. The State then presented surveillance footage showing Mr. Dean throwing the billiard ball at the victim’s head. {¶4} After the State rested, the defense moved for an acquittal on the felonious-assault count on the basis that a billiard ball is not a deadly weapon. The trial court denied the motion and, after the defense indicated that it was not presenting any evidence, denied the defense’s renewed motion for acquittal. The trial court found Mr. Dean guilty of felonious assault and aggravated riot. It found him not guilty of assault. Mr. Dean has appealed his felonious-assault conviction, raising two assignments of error for our review. II. ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR I THE VERDICT ON COUNT ONE IS AGAINST THE MANIFEST WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE AND NOT SUPPORTED BY SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE AND CONTRARY TO LAW. {¶5} In his first assignment of error, Mr. Dean challenges both the sufficiency and the manifest weight of the evidence presented at trial. Sufficiency and manifest weight are legally distinct issues. State v. Lee, 158 Ohio App.3d 129, 2004-Ohio-3946, ¶ 17 (9th Dist.). Notwithstanding, we will address them together. {¶6} Whether a conviction is supported by sufficient evidence is a question of law, which we review de novo. State v. Thompkins, 78 Ohio St.3d 380, 386 (1997). In carrying out this review, our “function * * * is to examine the evidence admitted at trial to determine whether such evidence, if believed, would convince the average mind of the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.” State v. Jenks, 61 Ohio St.3d 259 (1991), paragraph two of the ...

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