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Ohio DUI Law: Your Right To A Speedy Trial

Dayton DUI Attorney Charles Rowland > Uncategorized  > Ohio DUI Law: Your Right To A Speedy Trial

Ohio DUI Law: Your Right To A Speedy Trial

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Your right to a speedy and public trial is enshrined in the Bill of Rights.  The Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution provides,

“In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.” 

The Supreme Court has applied the protections of this amendment to the states through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.  Ohio Revised Code 2945.71 sets forth Ohio’s statutory rules regarding speedy trial rights which are coextensive with the constitutional speedy trial provisions.  State v. King (1994), 70 Ohio St. 3d 158, 161.  According to O.R.C. 2945.71, a defendant must be brought to trial as follows:

  1. Within forty-five days after the person’s arrest or the service of summons, if the offense charged is a misdemeanor of the third or fourth degree, or other misdemeanor for which the maximum penalty is imprisonment for not more than sixty days;
  2. Within ninety days after the person’s arrest or the service of summons, if the offense charged is a misdemeanor of the first or second degree, or other misdemeanor for which the maximum penalty is imprisonment for more than sixty days.
  3. Within two hundred seventy days after the person’s arrest for any felony.
  4. Most municipal ordinances and the Ohio Revised Code codify a misdemeanor OVI as a first degree misdemeanor requiring trial within 90 days of arrest.  An OVI arrest designated as a felony (four or more) requires trial within 270 days of arrest.  If a defendant is not tried within these time parameters, the case must be dismissed.
HOWEVER, there are a number of ways for the statutory time to be “tolled” against the Defendant.  The most common tolling mechanism  is for the Defendant (or his attorney)  to consent to a TIME WAIVER.  “A defendant’s right to be brought to trial within the time limits expressed in R.C. 2945.71 may be waived by his counsel for reasons of trial preparation and the defendant is bound by the waiver even though the waiver is executed without his consent.” State v. McBreen (1978), 54 Ohio St. 2d 315 (syllabus), see also State v. McRae (1978), 55 Ohio St. 2d 149, 151; State v. Davis (1975), 44 Ohio App. 2d 95.  Also, the filing of  “[a] demand for discovery or a bill of particulars is a tolling event pursuant to R.C. 2945.72(E).”  State v. Brown, 98 Ohio St. 3d 121, 2002-Ohio-7040.  Time is also tolled if the court is busy or otherwise unable to conduct a trial due to the “business of the court.”  This delay must be reasonable.
Often, complicated speedy trial issues will be raised following a lengthy or complex motion to suppress.  For example, reasonable was determined in State v. Arizola (1992), 79 Ohio App. 3d 72 wherein “time is not tolled when court takes an excessive amount to time to rule on pretrial motions filed by the defense (seven months in an OMVI case).”  See also State v. Mullins, 152 Ohio App. 3d 83, 2003-Ohio-477 (Court granted defendant’s motion to suppress statements 635 days after the evidentiary hearing. Constitutional right to a speedy trial was violated. A court’s discretion as to the time needed to rule on a defense motion is not limitless, and no explanation was given for the delay.)
DUI attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in Fairborn, Dayton, Springfield, Kettering, Vandalia, Xenia, Miamisburg, Springboro, Huber Heights, Oakwood, Beavercreek, Centerville and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself the Miami Valley’s choice for DUI defenseContact Charles Rowland by phone at 937-318-1DUI (937-318-1384), 937-879-9542, or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263).  For after-hours help contact our 24/7 DUI HOTLINE at 937-776-2671.  For information about Dayton DUI sent directly to your mobile device, text DaytonDUI (one word) to 50500.  Follow DaytonDUI on Twitter @DaytonDUI or Get Twitter updates via SMS by texting DaytonDUI to 40404. DaytonDUI is also available on Facebook and on the DaytonDUI channel on YouTube.  You can also email Charles Rowland at: CharlesRowland@DaytonDUI.com or write to us at 2190 Gateway Dr., Fairborn, Ohio 45324. “All I do is DUI
Charles Rowland


Charles M. Rowland II has been representing the accused drunk driver for over 20 years. Contact him at (937) 318-1384 if you find yourself facing a DUI (now called OVI) charge.

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