Prosecutors will challenge an appeals court ruling that shaved a year off of former Dayton restaurant owner Eva Christian’s nine-year prison sentence.
A spokesman for the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office told this news outlet this morning, Oct. 26, that prosecutors intend to file an appeal to the Ohio Supreme court in an attempt to overturn the ruling issued last week by the Ohio 2nd District Court of Appeals.
A three-judge panel of the appeals court ruled unanimously on Oct. 20 that Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Barbara P. Gorman exceeded her authority when she re-imposed the full, original nine-year sentence to Christian after the severity of some of the five felony charges on which Christian was convicted was reduced on appeal.
Prosecutors had argued that the judge was well within her sentencing rights and had urged appeals-court judges to keep Christian’s nine-year sentence intact.
They will now take their argument to the state’s highest court.
Christian has served more than five years in the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville for insurance fraud-related charges.
Christian owned and operated Cafe Boulevard (later Boulevard Haus) in Dayton’s Oregon District for 15 years. The criminal case involved break-ins and a 2009 fire that Christian reported and which prosecutors said were staged in order to collect insurance money: one break-in at her Washington Twp. home and a reported vandalism and fire at what was then her second restaurant, Cena Brazilian Steakhouse in front of the Dayton Mall in Miami Twp.
RELATED: Restaurant owner renews fight to get prison sentence reduced (February 2017)
A jury convicted Christian in 2012 of five counts related to insurance fraud, filing a false report and running a crime ring. Since then, her appeals have traveled a circuitous route among the court of appeals, the state supreme court and the trial court.