On Monday, November 20, 2023, inmate Ladd Dubose Sr. filed an original action complaint for a writ of procedendo with the Supreme Court of Ohio against Judge Leslie E. Ghiz of the Hamilton County Common Pleas Court.
According to the complaint, in July 2019 Dubose was indicted in Hamilton County on multiple counts of aggravated drug trafficking and weapons under disability. He later pleaded guilty to one count of each of those offenses and was sentenced to a total of five years in prison.
The complaint alleges that in 2023, Dubose became aware the drug trafficking charge to which he pleaded guilty was missing a key element of knowing conduct. Dubose argues this meant he pleaded guilty to an offense that did not actually exist under Ohio law.
On September 6 of this year, Dubose filed a motion in Hamilton County to dismiss the indictment against him based on this claim. However, Dubose asserts Judge Ghiz has failed to rule on the motion or respond to it in any way.
The complaint states it has been over two months since the motion was filed without a response from the prosecution or a decision from Judge Ghiz. Dubose argues this delay is unreasonable and that Judge Ghiz has a duty under the Ohio and U.S. Constitutions, as well as state law, to timely exercise the court’s jurisdiction and rule on pleadings.
If true and Judge Ghiz has not addressed Dubose’s motion, he is requesting the Supreme Court issue a writ of procedendo ordering her to immediately render a judgment.
As a London inmate, Dubose is representing himself pro se in the matter. He submitted signed affidavits and paperwork required under Ohio law for inmates filing actions against government employees.
The complaint raises serious allegations about the timeliness and propriety of Judge Ghiz’s handling of Dubose’s recent motion. It remains to be seen how the Supreme Court will rule on Dubose’s request for a writ compelling a decision in his Hamilton County case.
Judge Ghiz, a Republican, is a judge of the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas General Division in Ohio. She was elected to the position on November 6, 2012, with her current term ending on March 31, 2025. Her courtroom is located at Hamilton County Courthouse 1000 Main Street Room 530, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202, and can be reached at 513-946-5831.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.