Decision Announcements.

The Supreme Court of Ohio released two blockbuster decisions today, December 22, 2016. This short post is just an announcement—the blog will do a full analysis of both cases, but that will take some time. Luckily I’m retired, and don’t have torts exams to grade this December.

In State v. Moore, Slip Opinion No. 2016-Ohio-8288, in a 77 page opinion with two separate concurrences and two separate dissents, the court held that pursuant to Graham v. Florida 560 U.S. 48 (2010), “a term-of-years prison sentence that exceeds a defendant’s life expectancy violates the Eighth Amendment to the United States Constitution when it is imposed on a juvenile nonhomicide offender.” Moore, a juvenile at the time, was sentenced to an aggregate 112 year prison term. Justice Pfeifer wrote the majority opinion, joined by Justices O’Neill, Lanzinger and Chief Justice O’Connor. Chief Justice O’Connor also wrote a separate concurrence, as did Justice Lanzinger. Justice Kennedy wrote a dissent joined by Justice O’Donnell.  Justice French dissented separately.

State v. Aalim, Slip Opinion No. 2016-Ohio-8278 actually has a syllabus, which most cases covered by the blog haven’t had.  Here it is:

  1. The mandatory transfer of juveniles to the general division of common pleas court violates juveniles’ right to due process as guaranteed by Article I, Section 16 of the Ohio Constitution.
  2. The discretionary transfer of juveniles 14 years old or older to the general division of common pleas court pursuant to the process set forth in R.C. 2152.10(B) and 2152.12(B) through (E) satisfies due process as guaranteed by Article I, Section 16 of the Ohio Constitution.

Justice Lanzinger wrote the majority opinion, joined by Chief Justice O’Connor and Justices Pfeifer and O’Neill. Justice Kennedy concurred in part and dissented in part, with an opinion. Justice French wrote a dissent, joined by Justice O’Donnell.

And there is still more to come next week. These blog cases are still out:

Jessica Jacobson v. Ellen Kaforey et al.,

 The case was accepted on certified conflict to determine whether R.C. 2307.60 establishes a civil cause of action for violation of any criminal statute. The precise question certified is “does the current version of R.C. 2307.60 independently authorize a civil action for damages caused by criminal acts, unless otherwise prohibited by law?”

Pamela Argabrite v. Jim Neer, et al., 2015-0348

At issue is the validity of the rule adopted by Ohio courts of appeals known as the “no proximate cause” rule, which states that if a third party is injured by a fleeing violator in the course of a police pursuit, the officer is not the proximate cause of those injuries unless the officer’s conduct was considered extreme or outrageous.

Ross J. Linert et al. v Adrien Foutz, et al.,

At issue is whether a manufacturer has a duty to warn purchasers of known risks associated with the product after a sale is made, and whether the manufacturer’s implementation of an improvement program triggers a post-marketing duty to warn.

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