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2019 OPAA Annual Meeting
Hilton Columbus at Easton
December 12th and 13th, 2019


This year’s Annual Meeting will once again feature criminal and civil tracks. The criminal track will feature presentations on using storytelling to connect with jurors; an investigator’s look into the Shroud of Turin; rapid DNA; direct and cross examination; a look at new handheld mass spectrormeters; and recent SCOTUS cases of interest to the county prosecutor. On the civil side we’ll explore the board of revision; bankruptcy issues; employment issues including social media, Janus , ADA and drug testing; employee attendance and FMLA; avoiding liability when discrimination and harassment have been alledged; mandatory reporting as described in 2151.421; and a session geared toward supervisors (but good for all) looking at meeting legal obligations in general employment, HR, and investigatory scenarios. We will also have full requirements for professional conduct with presentations on prosecutorial misconduct and ethics. Please note the new venue for this year, The Hilton Columbus at Easton!

As a reminder, training manuals will once again only be available on-line. Access credentials will be sent to registrants. Please download these to your electronic device or print out, as we never know what kind of Wi-Fi connection is going to be present at the venue. Please include each registrant’s email address with the registration, as it is needed to forward the access credentials.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 12

8:00-9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast (PAs and APAs only)

Criminal Track

9:00-10:00 Storytelling for Trial Prosecutors
We've all heard that the "best story wins." That's especially true in an era when jurors watch LOTS of TV and LOTS of movies. Even "reality" TV is manipulated to create interesting stories. Our jurors are primed to receive information in the form of a story – if we aren't presenting information to them in the form they expect, we aren't being fully effective.
If a prosecutor is a natural storyteller, this presentation will help identify what they are doing so they can do it better. If a prosecutor ISN'T a natural storyteller, this presentation will give them concrete techniques that they can apply for themselves. This presentation won’t just talk about concepts – it won't help anybody to hear "Your case needs to have a theme" for the 300th time. Presenter looks to provide nuts-and-bolts tools that prosecutors can use to their advantage.
Drew E. Wood
Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, General Division
Lucas County Prosecutor's Office

10:00-10:15 Break

10:15-11:45 A Forensic Detective Investigates The Shroud of Turin
This investigative presentation will research the history of the Shroud of Turin looking at testing techniques, how art and art history contribute to answering the age of the Shroud, and how prosecutors can use many of the same techniques when looking at evidence in modern day cases.
Terry Cousino, Cold Case Investigator
Lucas County

11:45-1:15 Awards Luncheon (PAs and APAs only)

1:15-2:15 Rapid DNA
Rapid DNA instruments were designed to develop a DNA profile from a swab in less than two hours without human intervention or upload into CODIS. The Rapid DNA Act, which was signed into law in 2017, allows for the integration of Rapid DNA instruments for use by law enforcement for DNA testing of arrestees in a booking station. A review of how Rapid DNA instruments work, the type of samples they will search against and how these instruments will be used to enhance the CODIS database will be presented. The use of Rapid DNA instruments in a non-CODIS application to analyze crime scene samples will also be discussed.
Diana N. Gehres, CODIS Laboratory Manager
Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation

2:15-2:30 Break

2:30-4:30 Through the Lens of Case Analysis: Creating and Delivering Persuasive Direct and Cross Examinations
In this block of instruction Dean Rose will share with the group his approach to creating more persuasive direct and cross examinations. He will cover all of the fundamental techniques necessary, and place it in the context of superior persuasion techniques and modalities. Attendees will leave with a complete checklist of what to do, and a deeper understanding of how and when to do it.
Charles H. Rose, III
Dean and Professor of Law
Ohio Northern University

6:00-7:00 Welcoming Reception

7:00-9:00 Awards Banquet and Installation of New President

9:00-12:00 Hospitality Suite

Civil Track

9:00-10:00 Board of Revision Hearings & Appeals
With the assistance of their prosecuting attorneys, the members of the board of revision have an opportunity to decrease the number of appeals from the county board of revision to the Ohio board of tax appeals or common pleas court as well as educate the public. When the prosecuting attorney participates in designated commercial board of revision hearings, they are better prepared to explore settlement agreements with the attorney for the owners and the attorney for the school boards. If a settlement agreement is not reached, the prosecuting attorney can explore limiting or defining the issue(s) on appeal with the attorney for the owner and the attorney for the school board. This presentation will explore these concepts as well as recent case law and best practices.
Kimberly G. Alison, Esq.
Columbus, Ohio

10:00-10:15 Break

10:15-11:45 Bankruptcy Issues Affecting Ohio County Agencies
Civil prosecutors typically receive many questions about bankruptcy. Representing the county treasurer, many counties have unanswered questions or misconceptions about bankruptcy. This presentation will address the impact of bankruptcy filings, by individuals and businesses, upon Ohio county treasurers and other county agencies and officials. Issues discussed will involve the different types of bankruptcy filings and what a county prosecutor’s office should do to protect their clients.
Kenneth M. Richards, Shareholder
Luper Neidenthal & Logan, LPA
Columbus, Ohio

11:45-1:15 Awards Luncheon (PAs and APAs only)

1:15-2:15 The "Smorgasbord" of Employment Matters: New Decisions and Trends
It has been an interesting year! A new administration and budget, opioid litigation, as well as increasing number of employment law cases. In this presentation "buffet" we will look at social media and free speech, ADA and Disability separation: Janus the toddler, and drug testing marijuana and hemp.
Jonathan J. Downes
Zashin and Rich Co., L.P.A.
Columbus, Ohio

2:15-2:30 Break

2:30-3:30 Addressing Employee Attendance by Policy and Complying with the FMLA
This presentation will focus on how public employers can appropriately implement policies to assist in responding to employee attendance issues. Further, discussion will occur regarding Department of Labor Opinion Letters outlining the obligations of employers and supervisors to properly designate leave as Family Medical Leave. Emphasis will be placed on the requirements outlined in the Family Medical Leave Act. The session will also address the importance of maintaining accurate job descriptions and the disability separation process. Finally, case updates will be provided regarding how to respond to allegations and concerns of misuse.
Benjamin S. Albrecht, Partner and
Stephanie L. Schoolcraft, Associate
Fishel Downey Albrecht & Riepenhoff LLP
New Albany, Ohio

3:30-4:30 Avoiding Liability and Responding to Allegations of Discrimination and Harassment in the Workplace.
The purpose of the presentation is to review the legal obligations and responsibilities for employers and supervisors when faced with allegations of discrimination and harassment in the workplace. Types of discrimination prohibited by both federal and Ohio law will be discussed, including: race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, military and ancestry. The status of sex discrimination claims in Ohio and the Sixth Circuit will be discussed. The importance of updating and training employees regarding a public employer’s policy prohibiting discriminating and harassing behavior will be emphasized, especially matters related to retaliation.
Stephanie L. Schoolcraft, Associate
Fishel Downey Albrecht & Riepenhoff LLP
New Albany, Ohio

6:00-7:00 Welcoming Reception

7:00-9:00 Awards Banquet and Installation of New President

9:00-12:00 Hospitality Suite

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13

8:00-9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast (PAs and APAs only)

Combined Track

9:00-10:30 Prosecutorial Misconduct: Striking hard blows without hitting below the belt (Professionalism)
The United States Supreme Court has indicated that, “A prosecutor is at liberty to prosecute with earnestness and vigor, striking hard blows, but may not strike foul ones.” In this presentation we will examine what is fair and what is foul. We will examine issues relating to prosecutorial misconduct during the trial process including the use of PowerPoint at trial, improper comments made by the prosecutor’s witnesses at trial, discovery violations and any allegations of prosecutorial misconduct during opening and closing argument.
Philip Bogdanoff
Retired Career Prosecutor

10:30-10:45 Break

10:45-11:45 Ethics for Prosecutors: The Good News and the Bad News
Prosecutors are in the news every week for good stuff, bad stuff, and stuff you just can’t believe. This program will look at recent media cases involving prosecutors and the increasing scrutiny prosecutors face. We will also discuss whether prosecutors may face ethical misconduct charges more frequently in the future and how to avoid becoming the focus of a grievance investigation.
Heather M. Zirk, Bar Counsel
Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association

11:45-1:15 Lunch and Business Meeting (PAs and APAs only)

Criminal Track

1:15-2:15 Portable Devices for the Analysis of Controlled Substances
BCI and many law enforcement agencies throughout the state ceased performing field testing on controlled substances in 2016 with the introduction of highly potent synthetic opioids to Ohio’s street drugs. The traditional tests required significant sample handling and were not accurate in detecting the presence of synthetic opioids. This presentation explores the use of portable field testing devices that can more accurately identify the presence of a controlled substance or mixtures of controlled substances and in a manner that is safer for officers. The workshop will also cover the validation work done by BCI on recently purchased handheld mass spectrometers, how these devices are currently being utilized in investigations, and how their results can be used in legal proceedings.
George M. Gyurko, Special Agent Supervisor and
Jessica Toms, Laboratory Supervisor,
Both with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation

2:15-2:30 Break

2:30-3:45 Criminal Law at the Supreme Court of the United States – A Review (and Some Preview)
In this presentation, Ohio Solicitor General Ben Flowers looks back at significant criminal-law decisions in the Supreme Court’s last term. We will also look ahead, and offers some insight as to what developments in criminal law of interest to the prosecuting attorney we might expect going forward.
Benjamin M. Flowers, Solicitor General
Office of Attorney General Dave Yost

Civil Track

1:15-2:15 Reporting Sexual Predators, Understanding Ohio’s Mandatory Duty to Report Sexual Abuse
Many professionals estimate that one in four females and one in ten males are sexually abused as minors. However, as a career prosecutor and police legal advisor I have noticed there are many common misconceptions about sexual predators that prevent these crimes from being reported. We will examine R.C. 2151.421, Ohio’s Child Abuse Reporting Statute that requires professionals in their official capacity to report child abuse to a public children’s services agency. As the attorney for these agencies, it is important that attendees have an understanding of this statute. Attendees will learn the statutory duties of this agency, which professionals have a duty to report abuse, immunity for reporting sexual abuse, and the criminal and civil liability if professionals do not report sexual abuse. Further, we will discuss the civil liability of the public children’s services agency if they do not follow the mandates of this statute. The goal of this seminar is to understand the statutory duties and obligations contained in this statute in order to protect children from child sexual predators.
Philip Bogdanoff
Retired Career Prosecutor

2:15-2:30 Break

2:30-3:45 Reinforcing General Employment and HR Obligations for Success in the Workplace
Videos and “real-life” scenarios will be used to demonstrate the importance of supervisors meeting their legal obligations in their supervisory capacity. Specifically, supervisory responsibilities during investigations will be addressed. For example, legal obligations associated with privacy, due process and the impact of social media during investigations will be reviewed with attendees. Concerns related to cybersecurity in the workplace and the potential risks for workplaces that are too relaxed will be discussed. Additionally, the legal necessity to appropriately perform performance evaluations and prepare job descriptions will be reviewed. Finally, the legal considerations of which to be aware when termination is the only appropriate response.
Benjamin S. Albrecht, Partner
Fishel Downey Albrecht & Riepenhoff LLP
New Albany, Ohio

We have requested approval from the Supreme Court of Ohio Commission on Continuing Legal Education for 10.25 total CLE hours, including 2.50 of Attorney Professional Conduct Instruction.

Room rates at the Hilton Columbus at Easton are $189.00. To avoid paying tax, accommodations must be paid for with either an office check or office credit card. Personal payment, even though it will be reimbursed by the office, is not tax exempt by state law. To make reservations, call 614-414-5000. Identify yourself as being with OPAA to obtain our special rate. Our contract with the hotel specifies that all attendees at this meeting will pay the negotiated room rate. It violates the spirit of our agreement for attendees at this meeting to reserve a room at a lower government rate! The cut-off date for our block of rooms is Monday, November 18th. Check-in time is 4:00 p.m., and check-out time is 12:00 noon. Early check-in and late check-out based on availability. Cancellations must be made 24 hours prior to scheduled check-in time in order to receive a refund. Early Departure Policy: stated departure date can be changed at the time of check in without penalty. After check in any guest who checks out before their stated departure date will be charged a $100.00 fee. Parking rates: valet parking is available at $20.00 per day, no charge for self parking.

The registration fee for OPAA member counties is $375.00 for both days, and $200.00 if attending one day only. This covers all handout materials, continental breakfasts, breaks, and lunches for PAs and APAs on both days, and the welcoming reception, awards banquet, and hospitality suite for both registrant and guest. Fees for non-members are $750.00 for two days and $400.00 for one day. Cancellation of registrations made after Thursday, December 5th will be assessed a penalty of $200.00 if attending both days, and $125.00 if attending one day only. This is necessary to help defray the cost of food guarantees which must be made by that time. Please send registrations to OPAA (mail, fax, email) so that they arrive no later than Thursday, December 5th.

NOTE: If any registrant, or guest, has special dietary needs, please contact Delores
at 614-221-1266, so that advance arrangements can be made with the venue.
OPAA will accommodate requests as long as they can be supplied by the venue
without additional cost. Any additional cost must be borne by the registrant
and they will be notified in advance.

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