Updated Fri, Sep 6, 2013 10:31 am
Live videos of some Ohio Court of Claims trials will soon be available for public viewing online. The pilot program will launch Monday, September 9 with a case that will be streamed live at 10 a.m. on www.ohiochannel.org.
The Court of Claims is given original jurisdiction to hear and determine all civil actions filed against the state of Ohio and its agencies.
Court of Claims Clerk Mark Reed said viewing cases online will give the public a better understanding about what happens when someone sues the state.
“There’s an idea out in the public that you can’t sue the state, that you can’t fight city hall. The Court of Claims exists to say, ‘yes, you can,’ and you can bring those cases to one court in the state of Ohio, so we’re unique like that,” Reed said. “You can only sue the state here, and that to me is what makes the Court of Claims so very interesting.”
Last year, the court received more than 920 new or reactivated cases. Reed said on average, only about 60 of those cases actually go to trial.
Reed said the court will stream cases that may be of great public interest or of educational value.
Darrell Houston v. State of Ohio will be the first Court of Claims case broadcast live on the web. Houston was determined to have been wrongfully imprisoned and is suing for monetary compensation. He is seeking compensation for the 16 years he spent in prison, including seeking money for lost wages. The state is arguing that Houston would have served up to eight years in prison on a separate conviction, and said since he was unemployed at the time of his imprisonment, Houston had no “direct” lost wages. The hearing is expected to last up to three days.
Jenna Gant is a reporter for Court News Ohio