Loveland, the home of Salmon P. Chase and Jerry Springer, is one of many Ohio municipalities that has created a Mayor’s Court. This Court hears traffic cases, OVI (or DUI), driving under suspension (DUS), and other misdemeanors. Mayor’s Courts are presided over by a Magistrate.
The Loveland Police Department and the Clermont County Sheriff can cite first time offenders into the Loveland Mayor’s Court. Because Mayor’s Courts are not courts of record, a Defendant has the automatic right to appeal the case, regardless of the result. If a Defendant is not pleased with how their case turned out at the Mayor’s Court, the case can start over in the Clermont County Court. As Marty Hubbell says, “It is like getting two bites at the apple, which can be a great advantage to the defense.”
When charged with an offense in Loveland Mayor’s Court, it is especially important to retain a local lawyer who has experience working in these unique types of Courts. Because of the unofficial nature of Mayor’s Courts, the procedures and practical approaches to the case can vary greatly.
Loveland Mayor’s Court is conducted every first and third Thursday of the month at 6:00 p.m. at the Loveland City Hall Building, 120 West Loveland Avenue, Loveland, Ohio 45140. Your court date will be listed on your ticket or subpoena. Further information can be obtained at Loveland’s website:
Gabe Moorman is an associate in the law firm of Diehl & Hubbell, LLC (www.DiehlHubbell.com). He is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Law and former President of the Intellectual Property Legal Society. Mr. Moorman is a practicing criminal defense attorney in Southwest, Ohio. He can be reached at (513) 932-2121 or at GMoorman@DiehlHubbell.com.
By Marty Hubbell
I get asked that at least once a month. All attorneys have heard from potential clients who want to hire a Bulldog to represent them. Why? Because they erroneously believe that such lawyers are effective advocates for their clients.
Some people are generally unreasonable and unpleasant; some of these people happen to be lawyers. It is not hard to find them, as they are usually preceded by reputation.
These Bulldog lawyers have an inability to arrive at appropriate results in a timely fashion. They don’t return phone calls, are unprepared for hearings, and are unable to competently identify key issues in a case. But they are wonderful at turning legal cases into personal vendettas, when doing so has no practical purpose. Legal fees tend to get expensive, quickly, when fighting about anything and everything.
A Bulldog lawyer does not intimidate a competent attorney. I tell my clients in advance about the other attorney’s reputation, in order to prepare them. No party to litigation truly enjoys the experience, and you have to wonder about the unnecessary emotional cost their clients pay.
Judges and juries do not appreciate Bulldog lawyers. Court time is valuable and dockets are crowded. Recent studies suggest that jurors are particularly sensitive to choosing sides in a trial based upon a Judge’s rulings and demeanor toward individual attorneys. If an attorney argues ten points of law, when only two are viable, the stain of the poor arguments can filter down to the good ones.
There is so much more to being an effective advocate than just being adversarial. Be cautious when a lawyer brags about being tough and aggressive. A competitive spirit should not be confused with a combative personality. The qualities you should demand in a lawyer are no different than those you would want from other people in your life: diligence, competence, honesty, and reasonableness.
Marty Hubbell is a partner in the law firm of Diehl & Hubbell, LLC (www.DiehlHubbell.com), and has been practicing criminal defense law in Warren County, Ohio for ten years. He has been named an Ohio Super Lawyer, and is a part-time Magistrate for the City of Lebanon, Ohio. He can be reached at (513) 932-2121 or MHubbell@DiehlHubbell.com