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21.01 Purpose

The purpose of these Rules is to provide the fairest and most expeditious administration of criminal justice within the requirements of the Ohio Rules of Criminal Procedure, the provisions of the U.S. and Ohio Constitutions, and the Ohio Revised Code. These rules, promulgated pursuant to C.P.Sup.R. 9, shall be construed and applied to eliminate delay, unnecessary expense, and all other impediments to a just determination of criminal cases.

21.02 Limitations as to Time

Recognizing the “right to speedy trial”, as guaranteed in the Ohio Constitution and delineated in R.C. 2945.71, .72, and .73, that all criminal cases shall be concluded 270 days after arrest or 90 days from arrest if the defendant is in jail, the further requirement of C.P.Sup.R. 8(B), recommending disposition of a criminal case (felony) within six months of arraignment, it shall be the responsibility of the assigned trial judge to schedule all motions, pretrials, conferences, and final trial date for disposition within the confines of those laws and rules.

21.03 Assignment of Cases

(A) At the time a Common Pleas Court criminal case number is assigned by the Clerk of Courts, the Criminal Assignment Administrator shall prepare an Order of Appointment of Counsel for the Designated Assignment Judge. That order shall be filed with the Clerk of Courts and served upon defendant's counsel and teh Summit County Prosecutor's Ogfice.

(B) Following indictment by the grand jury, the Criminal Assignment Administrator shall, using the computer listing of the names of al Trial Judges of the General Division of the Court, cause the computer to assign a Trial Judge, at random, with due regard for other prior or pending criminal cases, subject to subpart (E), and pursuant to the individual assignment system in place as provided for in Ohio Superintendence Rule 36. Assignments shall continue, at random, until each case has been assigned.

(C) At the time of such assignment, the Criminal Assignment Administrator shall prepare a Notice of Assignment and provide it to the clerk of Courts for service of the indictment upon the Defendant by the Clerk.

(D) The assigned case shall be scheduled for arraignment before the Trial Judge or, in the absence or unavailability of the Trial Judge, a qualified individual designated by the Trial Judge

(E) With the exception of Defendants charged with murder, aggravated murder or facing a death penalty specification, in the case where a defendant is charged with a new criminal offense by indictment and the defendant has then pending an existing criminal case assigned to a court in the General Division that has not been finalized by dismissal or sentencing, is currently on probation, or has then pending a probation violation set or to be set for disposition by a court in this Division, then in such circumstances, the defendant's new case shall be assigned to the court where the defendant's current criminal case is assigned; that being either the court of assignment on the earlier case or the court which is to address the probation violation. Such Rule is in harmony with Local Rule 21.03(a) and 21.04, as well as the Ohio Supreme Court Rule of Superintendence 36(B)(2).

21.04 Service of Notice of Assignment, Indictment and Arraignment

(A) At the time of assignment of the case under Local Rule 21.03, the Criminal Assignment Administrator shall cause the Notice of Assignment to be served upon the defendant. Said notice shall contain the name of the assigned Trial Judge.

(B) Upon receipt of the Notice of Assignment, the Clerk of Courts shall serve a copy of the Indictment upon the Defendant, and provide a copy of said service to the Defendant's counsel of record, as appointed by the Designated Assignment Judge pursuant to Local Rule 21.09

(C) Upon receipt of the Notice of Assignment, the Trial Judge shall set an arraignment date, preferably in one week from the service of the indictment or not more than two weeks, as consistent with the Court’s “call day” for arraignment of criminal cases.

(D) The Trial Judge, or qualified individual designated by the Trial Judge, shall arraign the defendant and, if no plea of guilty is entered, shall set a trial date. In the alternative, the Trial Judge shall set a pretrial conference within four (4) weeks from the date of arraignment

21.05 Pretrial Conference

Having assigned a pretrial date at the arraignment, the Court shall then proceed to hold a conference with the Assistant Prosecutor assigned and the defense counsel to determine the following:

(1) status of discovery;

(2) whether a plea or trial is anticipated;

(3) motions to be filed; and,

(4) trial date if no plea is anticipated due to the pretrial conference.

21.06 Duties of Counsel

It shall be the responsibility of the Assistant Prosecutor assigned and the defense counsel, to carry out the policy of “open-file discovery”, as is the custom of this Court and the Prosecutor's office. Defense counsel must, between the time of arraignment and pretrial, review the Prosecutor's file for pertinent evidence and factual determinations as to the truth of the charge so that meaningful discussion shall be had at the pretrial conference regarding plea or trial.

It shall be the responsibility of the Assistant Prosecutor assigned, to have available early and open discovery of pertinent evidence and availability of lab tests that they intend to introduce into evidence. It shall be the responsibility of the Court to supervise and monitor the handling of the discovery, and determine whether or not motion dates, if requested, are set for evidentiary hearing or ruling, as the case may be.

21.07 Sentencing

If, upon a plea or conviction, the Court shall set sentencing with or without a pre-sentence investigation, as the cause directs pursuant to C.P.Sup.R. 8(C).

21.08 Post-Judgment Proceedings

All post-judgment and post-sentence proceedings shall be set by the Court with notice to all parties, pursuant to C.P.Sup.R. 8(D) and the Ohio Revised Code where post-judgment proceedings are allowed.

21.09 Representation of Indigent Defendants

(A) Felony Appointments

1. The Pretrial Services Department will provide the Criminal Assignment Administrator a list of all individuals charged with a felony crime[s] with in Summit County. Pretrial Services will gather this information from various sources, including the Summit County Jail, local municipalities, municipal prosecutors office, Summit County Prosecutor's Office, Summit County Legal Defender's Office and local municipal courts.

2. The Pretrial Services Department will provide that list of individuals to the Designated Assignment Judge. Any person charged with a felony crime and found to be indigent, in need of an attorney, and entitled to the same, shall be appointed a practicing attorney from the Appointment List, as defined in Section (B).

3. The Designated Assignment Judge will notify the Criminal Assignment Administrator, who will then notify the municipal courts, the Summit County Prosecutor, the prosecutor of the appropriate municipal jurisdiction, and any lawyer appointed in municipal court of the identity fo the counsel to be appointed by teh Designated Assignment Judge.

4. The Designated Assignment Judge shall appoint counsel from the Appointment List. In making an appointment, the appoint Judge shall consider:

  1. The skill, expertise, disciplinary record, promptness and past experience(s) with and of potential appointee;
  2. The anticipated complexity of the case in which appointment will be made;
  3. Any educational, mental health, language, or other challenges facing the party of whom the appointment is made;
  4. The relevant experience of those persons available to accept the appointment, including proficiency in a foreign language, familiarity with mental health issues, and scientific of other evidence issues;
  5. The avoidance of conflicts of interest or other situations that may potentially delay timely completion of the case;
  6. Intangible factors, including the court or judicial officer’s view of a potential appointee’s commitment to providing timely, cost-effective, quality representation to each prospective client.

5. A record of appointments will be maintained by the Court and reviewed periodically, but not less than annually, by the Administrative Judge to ensure an equitable distribution of appointments.

(B) Appointment List

1. The Summit County Common Pleas Court shall maintain a list of attorneys in private practice who are willing to accept appointments for felony criminal cases. This approved trial counsel list shall be in effect for a period of two years, consistent with counsel’s biennial continuing legal education reports, and will end on January 31 of the following year. Counsel whose name appears on the approved trial counsel list may file an application for renewal to serve as appointed counsel, no earlier than three months prior to, and no later than the expiration of the approved trial counsel list then in effect. Counsel who fails to timely file an application for renewal shall be removed from the new approved trial counsel list. Applications for reinstatement may be filed at any time and considered on a rolling basis at the end of the month submitted.

2. Attorneys who wish to be placed on the Appointment List shall apply in writing to the Court, at, and submit a photograph, proof of malpractice insurance and other information described herein.

3. In order to be approved for inclusion on the Appointment List, and attorney must meet the following standards:

  1. Be a licensed Ohio attorney in good standing;
  2. Meet the requirements set forth in the Ohio Administrative Code 120-1-07 and 120-1-10;
  3. Take the Annual Criminal Law Update, offered through the Akron Bar Association or equivalent course, during each calendar year;
  4. Maintain professional liability (malpractice) insurance in the amount equal to the minimum coverage required by the Ohio Rules of Professional Conduct. An attorney shall file a certificate of compliance with this requirement with his or her application, and thereafter with each renewal as prescribed in (B)(6).
  5. For attorneys with less than two years of practice, take the ABCs of a Jury Trial, offered through the Akron Bar Association or equivalent course;
  6. For attorneys with less than two years of practice, take the Nuts-n-Bolts of Criminal Practice, offered through the Akron Bar Association or equivalent course;
  7. Meet contact requirements in subpart 4, below.

4. Upon appointment, the attorney shall perform basic duties as warranted by the facts of the case and shall act in a professional manner.

5. The attorney shall have an active email address, a working phone with a secretary and/or voicemail to be able to respond to calls from the Court or clients, the ability to receive text messages to a designated cell phone number, and the ability to connect via video and audio to the Court’s remote technology, as instructed. The attorney shall inform the Court promptly of a change of designated cell phone number, cell phone carrier, email address, physical address and/or phone number.

6. An attorney may be removed from the Appointment List with the approval of a majority of the Summit County Common Pleas Judges. Any attorney being considered for removal will be notified by the Court in writing, with the reasons for removal, and given an opportunity to respond to writing within fourteen (14) days. Such response will be distributed prior to any meeting at which the removal will be discussed and determined. If an attorney is so removed, the attorney may seek reinstatement upon correction of the reasons for removal.

7. Applications may be found on the Summit County Common Pleas Court website and will be considered on a rolling basis at the end of each month, with approval by the last day of each month submitted. Applicants shall refer to the Summit County Common Pleas Court website for additional information regarding application procedures and deadlines.

8. Applicants shall refer to the Summit County Common Pleas Court website for additional information regarding application procedures and deadlines.

(C) Fee Schedule

1. The fee schedule applicable to all practicing attorneys on the Appointment List will be the fee schedule identified by the Ohio Public Defender Commission and approved by Summit County and the time of the request, as well as expenses allowed by Court.

2. No attorney, including the Legal Defender, appointed to represent an indigent defendant, shall receive any fees other than public funds for services relative to that appointment. Before the appointed attorney shall receive any money from or on behalf of an indigent for services in such representation, the Court shall immediately be notified, withdrawing with waiver of any fees from public funds.


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