At the last minute, without warning, the government convicted Demetrius of a more serious offense than with which he was originally charged. Demetrius received a ticket for OVI. The ticket informed him he was charged with a low-tier ‘per se’ OVI, which carries a minimum of three days in jail and does not involve mandatory restricted (yellow) license plates. Just before his case was finished, the court permitted the prosecution to change the charge to a high-tier ‘per se’ OVI, which carries a minimum of six days in jail and mandatory yellow license plates. Can the government to that?
That question was answered in the recent case of State of Ohio v. Demetrius Rosemond, and the answer is not obvious. It involves interpreting Rule 7 of the Ohio Rules of Criminal Procedure. That Rule addresses amendment of complaints, and a traffic ticket is a type of complaint. The Rule says a complaint may be amended, “provided no change is made in the name or identity of the crime charged.” The question in the Rosemond case is whether amending the ticket from a low-tier OVI to a high-tier OVI changes the name or identity of the crime charged.
The Ohio Supreme Court ruled on a similar issue in State v. Campbell. In Campbell, the defendant was charged with violating Ohio Revised Code section 4511.19(A)(5). With that particular sub-section (the  at the end), the government alleged the defendant had a blood alcohol concentration over .08. The trial court permitted the prosecution to amend the ticket to 4511.19(A)(6). With that amended subsection (the  at the end), the government alleged the defendant had breath alcohol concentration over .08.