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Pat Kelly and his defense attorney Scott Woods following Kelly being handcuffed and sentenced to 7 years in prison on March 20, 2015. (FILE)

Ohio Supreme Court will not hear former Athens sheriff’s appeal

A former Athens sheriff convicted of theft in office has once again been denied an appeal.

The Ohio Supreme Court declined to hear Pat Kelly’s case in a one-sentence memo filed Wednesday. It did not provide a reasoning for its decision.

Kelly was sentenced to seven years in prison in February 2015 after an Athens County jury found him guilty of crimes including perjury, engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and 12 counts of theft in office. In January, the 4th District Court of Appeals dismissed his first appeal. He then filed the appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court on Feb. 1. Kelly represented himself in his appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court.

According to Ohio Supreme Court rules of practice, the court may decide not to hear an appeal for four reasons. It can refuse to hear an appeal if it decides the appeal does not involve a constitutional question, great public interest, a felony conviction or if the appeal does involve a felony conviction, but the court decides an appeal is not warranted.

Kelly was convicted of felony offenses. In his appeal, he argued that his case involved great public interest and a constitutional question. The Ohio Supreme Court may have declined to hear his case for a variety of reasons.

Kelly is currently incarcerated at Corrections Medical Center, according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction website.

Kelly now has the option to petition the U.S. Supreme Court. He has 90 days to file that petition.

The U.S. Supreme Court receives 7,000-8,000 petitions each term, according to its website. It hears oral arguments for about 80 of those cases.


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