Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Ohio Supreme Court Rules in Carswell

The Ohio Supreme Court today released its decision in State v. Carswell, the case in which a domestic violence defendant claimed that the gay marriage ban overturns that part of the domestic violence statute that applies to cohabiting, unmarried couples. H/t to Equality Ohio who just sent me an email alert.

The result is not surprising -- the Court upholds the DV statute notwithstanding the new amendment. Here's the syllabus:

    The term “living as a spouse” as defined in R.C. 2919.25 merely identifies a particular class of persons for the purposes of the domestic-violence statutes. It does not create or recognize a legal relationship that approximates the designs, qualities, or significance of marriage, as prohibited by Section 11, Article XV of the Ohio Constitution.
BTW, in Ohio the syllabus is the supposed to be the only part of the case that has weight as precedent.

I'll try to take it in and write a more detailed post later. I'm kid-free for the next day or so and might actually be able to do some substantive blogging.


Brenda F said...

Ok.. so I hate to admit this but Michael Shane Carswell is my cousin... In no way do I condone the fact that he hit this girl.. however.. he was doing heavy drugs at the time (i.e. heroin and oxycottin) really anything that he could get his hands on...
Again, I am not saying that he shouldn't have to serve time for his crime... I am saying that the system is just as messed up with everything that they have put him through in the past as well.. He has 2 children that the mother will not let him see, but yet she still expects that child support check every week. That is not fare to him either..

Long story short... he has a good heart when he is not messed up on all that junk... Take that into consideration before you pass judgment.

Pho said...


Thanks for reminding me that the case is about real people with real problems. We lawyers tend to set that dimension aside while we argue about the big legal picture.