Tampering With Evidence in Ohio

The crime of tampering with a witness is a felony of the third degree under Ohio's Revised Code Section 2921.12. The elements of tampering with evidence include:

  • Knowing that an official proceeding or investigation is in progress, or is about to be or likely to be instituted;
  • The defendant does one of the following:
    • Alter, destroy, conceal, or remove any record, document, or thing, with purpose to impair its value or availability as evidence in such proceeding or investigation;
    • Make, present, or use any record, document, or thing, knowing it to be false; and
      • with the purpose to mislead a public official who is or may be engaged in such proceeding or investigation; or
      • with the purpose to corrupt the outcome of any such proceeding or investigation.

On May 29, 2014, the Ohio Supreme Court redefined the charge of Tampering with Evidence to include an intent to impair its value or availability as evidence in such proceeding or investigation.

The second element requires that the defendant know there is or likely will be a criminal investigation involving the evidence at issue. Therefore, the court will consider whether the evidence in question was involved in a crime for which the suspect is charged.

On the other hand, if the item that is being concealed, destroyed or altered is not directly related to the investigation then the crime of tampering was not committed.

Additional Resources

Prosecutor's Views on Tampering with Evidence - Recent article by a County Prosecuting Attorney in Ohio published by the Ohio Patrolmen's Benevolent Association. The article discusses Ohio's recent decisions on tampering with evidence, elements of the offense, and considerations for law enforcement when determining the appropriate charges.

Finding a Lawyer for Tampering with Evidence Crimes in Cincinnati, OH

If you were arrested for Tampering with Evidence in Cincinnati, Ohio, or the surrounding areas in Hamilton County, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Joslyn Law Firm.

We represent clients on these serious charges and fight to help them obtain the best result in their case. We are experienced in fighting a wide range of criminal offenses that are classified as offenses against justice.

Let us put our experience to work for you. Call (513) 399-6289 today.

This article was last updated on Friday, November 17, 2017.