State of ohio criminal justice system

There are two general types of plea bargains in Ohio. The charge plea bargain allows the defendant to plead guilty to a lesser charge or only a portion of the charges. The sentence bargain occurs when the defendant pleads guilty to the charges and the prosecutor agrees to a specific sentence, which should be approved by the judge.


Although most judges will approve the sentence, there is no law that mandates the judge to abide by the terms of the plea bargain. Additionally, it is important to remember that a plea bargain is a contractual agreement between the prosecutor and the defendant. If either party fails to uphold their end of the agreement, consequences will follow.

Reforming Criminal Justice Without Changing the Law - Jordan Richardson - TEDxMarshallUniversity

If the defendant in any way fails to comply, the prosecutor may revoke the agreement and re-file charges. Although plea bargains are generally not the most desirable option, they are sometimes the best alternative available under the circumstances. Trials can be grueling, and often take weeks or months to complete.

When considering a plea bargain, the most favorable reasons to choose to enter a plea bargain can include one or more of the following:. In felony cases, the defendant is entitled to a preliminary hearing. After the judge has heard all evidence, he or she will make a determination as to whether the prosecution has presented sufficient evidence to support a finding of probable cause the defendant committed the alleged offense.

If the judge finds that probable cause does not exist, the defendant will be released. The common pleas court will have jurisdiction over a felony criminal case if the judge finds probable cause exists.

Reform OH: Bringing More Justice to the Ohio Criminal Justice System

If a plea bargain is not entered after the arraignment, the case will proceed to trial. In some cases, the judge will schedule a pre-trial hearing. During the pre-trial hearing, the prosecution and defense discuss the strengths and weaknesses of their side, and may attempt to re-negotiate a plea agreement. During her final stay in jail, it seemed like Jessica was finally making strides.

She was participating in jail programming, and Donna was working to find a bed for Jessica in a rehabilitation facility.

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And she did all those things. Jessica connected with a medically assisted treatment program, completed a program for women struggling with addiction, attended group counseling sessions, and found some housing options. The McMullen family - Donna, right, Donna's daughter, and Donna's sister - sit on the couch between posters they made for Jessica's funeral.

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But again we felt like there was a path, because jail is not treatment. There are some good programs in the jail, but it is not treatment.

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She was in an environment where she was surrounded by people who were associated with the lifestyle. And unfortunately, the disease was hanging over her, and it won. And why does the system give so much decision-making power to people like her daughter, who are driven to get out of jail so that they can use, not change?

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  6. She was my first-born child and I loved her beyond reason. She should still be in jail. View the discussion thread.

    Reform OH: Bringing More Justice to the Ohio Criminal Justice System

    We position faith leaders and impacted families at the center of strategies to change the criminal justice system. And we are growing a statewide network of partners, members, and allies who build power together. As we continue to drive a statewide decarceration campaign, OOC organizers have built local campaigns calling for new public safety priorities. Organizers engage and recruit people on the ground to be leaders in fights for police accountability, community safety, juvenile justice, restorative justice, and bail reform.

    Our leaders build teams in communities directly impacted by economic disinvestment, violence, over-policing, and over-incarceration.

    Ohio's Criminal Justice System Explained by Attorney Brian Joslyn

    In a span of two years, OOC member organizations won 14 fair hiring local ordinances in communities across the state. TCAP expands funding for counties to divert nonviolent offenders away from state prison and into community treatment and rehabilitation programs. In , we worked with state and national partners, including the Alliance for Safety and Justice, to launch a statewide criminal justice reform ballot initiative, where 7, leaders and volunteers successfully collected over , signatures, adding to the , signatures that were submitted to qualify the initiative and place it on the ballot.