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The Law Office of Stephen W. Wolf, LLC

26777 Lorain Road  Suite 709

North Olmsted, Ohio  44070


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Criminal Charge:  Dismissed!

Guardianship:  Terminated!

Mom & daughter:  Reunited!

The paternal grandmother of my client's four year old daughter falsified an Application for Guardianship in order to insure my client could not defend against losing custody of her daughter.  The grandmother then had my client arrested for Interference with Custody based on that fraud.  She spent a night in jail for something she never knew occurred.

I first took the guardianship to trial.  The probate court found that the grandmother had perpetrated a fraud on the Court.  The Court also found that the grandmother's actions in causing the criminal prosecution was unconscionable.

The criminal charge was then dismissed.

It took us about four hours and required the cooperation of two police departments in order to find the missing daughter and reunite her with her mother.

Jury finds Navy veteran not guilty

When a husband and wife saw a man walking through a shopping center parking lot trying to zip his coat, they mistakenly decided he was exposing himself. The husband became enraged and began screaming at my client. The husband got out and tried to chase him down on foot. When that didn't work, the husband returned to his car and began chasing the man with his vehicle. The police arrived, did absolutely no investigation, believed the husband and wife and charged my client with Public Indecency. My client was found not guilty when the jury learned of the lack of police work and compared the credibility of my client with that of the enraged husband.

Domestic Violence:  Sometimes the defendant is actually the victim

The charges against my client were dismissed on the morning of the jury trial.

Prior to my involvement, my client was charged with domestic violence which was plead down to disorderly conduct.  She was not represented by an attorney.  Big mistake.  She indicated to anyone who would listen that she was the victim, not the boyfriend who had brought the domestic violence charges.  No one believed her.  She had to do anger management, mental health assessments, probation meetings, pay a fine, pay costs, etc.

She was again arrested.  This time she hired me.  I was able to prove to the city that her boyfriend was abusing her.  The abuse was horrific.  By the time the case was brought to trial everyone involved either believed she was the victim or, unable to actually say that, stated "we can't win this case so we are dismissing it".


It is vital that you keep records, recordings, photographs and whatever other documents you can come up with to PROVE your claim.  Most cellular phones will record and in Ohio you can record any discussion as long as you are part of that discussion.

Jury finds client not guilty of assault

Her boyfriend's aunt hated my client because she was not Liberian, the nationality of my client and the aunt.  The jury took minutes to agree that my client was not guilty.  Why?

1.  The police work that was done was horrible.  They lost evidence.  They didn't care to get both sides of the story.  Even the cop on the stand had to admit they did a terrible job.

2.  The aunt was shown to be completely unbelievable.  Her story changed.  She lied about how much she hated my client--she wasn't Liberian.

3.  My client testified from her heart, holding nothing back-the good and the bad.

A juror told me the unanimous verdict finding her not guilty took only minutes.

Aggravated Robbery:  Jury says "Not Guilty!"

My client was fingered by the victim of an armed robbery three days after the robbery supposedly occurred.  I was able to show that at the time of the robbery, the victim was drunk.  Through questioning in front of the jury, I showed the victim was changing his story, even on the stand, even during the trial.

As important, I showed that the police made numerous and serious errors in their investigation.  I was able to get both the officer and the detective to admit to so many mistakes that I myself had a hard time not getting angry and upset at their behavior.

The jury went out with questions about a forty-five minute video recording of an interview done with my client.  They took the interview to the jury room.  The jury came back with a "not guilty" about an hour after starting deliberations.  If they watched the video, it took them fifteen minutes to decide and make out the forms.

F3 Trafficking in marijuana with a 1 year gun spec --- dismissed

My client's brother, who suffered from a developmental disability, was "interviewed" by the police in order to find out who owned marijuana and a gun in the brother's apartment.  They put a load of pressure on the brother who then told the police my client was to blame.

I was able to show that there was no evidence linking my client and the jury would see through the pressure they put on the affected brother.

On my advice my client stuck to his guns and demanded a jury trial.  When the time for trial came, the charges were dismissed.

Father threatens mother -- son gets arrested for domestic violence

When a drunken father threatened the mother, the son came between the mother and father.  I was able to show the father instigated the fight and with the help of the mother and two of his brothers, demonstrate that it was the father who should have been charged.

Cops can sometimes act against a child!

Cops can sometimes miss the underlying issues of a domestic violence, keying in on a son or daughter and deciding that person is guilty because the parent must be right.  This is very bad police work!

My client was found not guilty.

Trooper fails, client wins OVI dismissal

My client was charged with operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol.  The trooper's video showed the only weaving was when the aggressive trooper weaved his cruiser into the lane being used by my client, forcing my client off the side of the road.  The trooper's instructions to my client were garbled.  All of the required field tests were done wrong.  On the day of the suppression hearing I was able to demonstrate first to the prosecutor and then to the magistrate that the stop was unconstitutional, the tests were not admissible and all evidence should be suppressed.  We didn't even need a suppression hearing.  They dropped the OVI.  My client was valid that same day.

Child Endangering?  NO!!!

Called in the wee hours of the morning in a winter snow storm, my client was ordered to IMMEDIATELY drive across town to pick up her son.  He had been arrested for being out after curfew.  My client explained she had no car.  The officer loaded the child up and drove him home and cited my client for child endangering.  We never waivered from demanding a trial.  No trial was necessary.  The charges were dismissed.

Change in medications = dismissal

A pharmaceutical company stopped making a drug which had been prescribed to my client.  His doctor ordered another drug in its place.  An unforeseen interaction resulted in my client being found sleeping in his car in a gas station parking lot.  He was charged with physical control.  I was able to show evidence that it was not physical control but a medical emergency that caused my client to appear drunk.  The case was dismissed.

Ongoing attack by ex-wife

After my client was able to plea down a domestic violence in Texas, he and his ex-wife were divorced.  He returned to Ohio.  His ex-wife followed.  She filed a request for a domestic violence protection order.  My client went to the hearing but was unable to navigate the legalese and properly defend himself.  He hired me and we returned to show the wife could not provide any reason she should fear harm.  We were able to show JS just wanted to get on with his life.  The order was lifted and they both went their separate ways.

A Hit Skip That Wasn't

My client hit an old, abandoned trash can left on the tree lawn of a major road.  Ohio law gives a driver 24 hours to report damage to property.  My client pulled over and found his car disabled.  No one was around so he parked his car in a parking lot and went home.  The next morning he awoke and soon after called the police to dutifully report his accident.  My client was charged with hit-skip, a very serious charge.  The hit skip was dropped but as my client admitted to losing control, he did suffer a failure to control charge.  Please see my page describing your RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT.

Mental health issue leads to criminal charges

It isn't at all unusual to find that a person was charged in a criminal matter but the basis of the problem lies in a mental health issue.  E.D. was charged with trespassing not long after having pled to shoplifting.  As he was on probation for the shoplifting, his probation was revoked and he was sent to county jail for a term of thirty days.  Visiting him at County, I found other issues at play and interviewed his elderly mother.  While she wasn't tuned into what was happening, she led me to E.D.'s four children.  They had no idea the major change in behavior that had occurred.  I was able to transfer the thrust of the case from criminal to mental health, get him out of jail and connect him to mental health professionals who could help him with his problem.

Domestic Violence:  Keeping a couple together

I spent a great deal of time in numerous pretrials laying the groundwork for a husband and wife to come back together as a couple. Ohio's domestic violence laws work well when violence is an issue. Otherwise it works to keep couples apart; providing protection but splitting marriages. Married forty years, K.W. and J.W. never realized the problems that would occur when they called the police. I managed to convince the court they belonged together. From a possible six months in jail and a $1000 maximum fine, K.W. had to do forty hours of community service and pay $122 in court costs.

Police investigation:  Over the top aggressive police behavior

I was retained by S.C. who had done nothing but be in a car with a co-worker.  That co-worker lost a bank deposit.  The police would normally talk to all involved parties.  In this case, S.C. had a prior felony theft conviction and was on probation.  The police arrived at S.C.'s parents house and became overly aggressive with S.C.'s family.  After some time they left telling the family they would get S.C. in trouble by reporting this matter to her probation officer.  And they did report it.  S.C. was hoping to move out of state and attend college.  Based on her prior experience with aggressive police officers she knew that it was likely they would lie, shout and be extremely overbearing.  S.C. came to me.  I became the go-between.  I insured the police understood that her rights would be protected to the maximum degree.  Further abuse would not be used.  The police changed their attitude.  The resulting interview was professional and no untrue information was used by the police.  S.C. disclaimed her involvement and the report became what it should of been in the first place.  That is, a report about lost property.

Police officers can lie in their investigation.  They can claim they have evidence they don't have.  For example, a standard police trick is to toss a blank DVD on the table in front of a suspect and state that "It is all there, right there on the DVD.  "We have video of you committing the crime!"  Proper representation will stop this nonsense.  I will stop this nonsense.

I will zealously represent you and your family as far as the law will allow.  I will certainly not back down when prosecutors or police officers make threats against either you or against us.

She said he did it -

                        He said he did not

My client broke up with his girlfriend and, as in most cases, things did not go well.  She added something to the mix when she made a report that he stole her money.  It was hidden in her daughter's room in a secret place.  She never told him about it, but he must have taken it.

The judge threw out the charge.  You can't lose money and then start pointing at people you don't like in order to try to get that money back.

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 Practice Areas

Criminal Law

General information on criminal law

Your right to remain silent

Ohio Criminal Law Sentences

Gun specifications

Grand Juries in Ohio

Probation Violation

About Diversion

About Intervention in Lieu of Conviction - ILC

Ohio Statute of Limitations

Your right to a speedy trial

Mental health and developmental disabilites

Drugs and Student Loans in Ohio

Ohio Conspiracy Law

Ohio Crimes of Violence

Ohio Judicial Release

Text messages WILL be made public

Grandparent Rights / Parent Rights

Expunging or Sealing my arrest or conviction

Habeas Corpus Petition

Most often charged

Operating while under the influence (OVI, DUI, DWI)

The OVI pages include penalties and information for family and friends.

Ohio interlock violations

An interlock is a device that is attached to your vehicle which, they say, measures the alcohol in your breath.

Domestic Violence

Civil Protection Orders

The Domestic Violence and Civil Protection Order pages include discussions about the arrest, protection orders, penalties, withdrawing a complaint and information for family and friends.  Be sure to check my information on the effect of a domestic violence arrest on owning weapons.

Driving while under suspension

The DUS pages include information about the types of suspensions, points, my other DUS website and a special offer for brief advice to help you understand how to get your license back.


Some municipalities with malls or fancy developed shopping areas feel the must "crack down" on shoplifting.  Given that mandate, I have observed the police are more likely to charge cases in which they have little or, surprisingly often, very little evidence.  Call me and let me review the facts.


Not the crime it once was, paraphernalia still brings serious consequences.  The state code punishments were lowered but many if not most cities left the old harsh penalties in place.  You can lose your license to drive for six months.  You can end up in jail for up to thirty days.  Add-on charges can cost you your student loans.  Call me and let me review the facts.

Ohio Probation Violations


Internet-based Crime

Internet Sex Crimes

Crimes of Violence

Domestic Violence

Assault and Felony Assault



Burglary and Aggravated Burglary




Shoplifting:  Please consider that if the city that is charging you refuses to deal, it is often in your best interest to request a trial.  It is not unusual for a store to fail to appear for trial.  CALL ME!


I found a dog ... can I keep it?

Sex Crimes



Sexual Imposition and Gross Sexual Imposition

Sexual Battery


Drug Offenses


Drugs and Student Loans in Ohio

Drug Trafficking

Drug Possession

Manufacturing and Cultivation

Prescription Drugs


Carrying a Concealed Weapon (CCW)

Having a Weapon While Under a Disability

Traffic Tickets

Truck Violations (No Through Trucks)

Issues with a Commercial Driver's License (CDL)


Failure to Control

Accident Citations Including Hit Skip/Failure to Stop

Automated Camera

Driving Under Suspension

Driving while under the influence (OVI, DUI, DWI)

Traffic Control Devices

About points on your license

Elderly - Getting your license reinstated

Ohio Probation Violations

Ohio Probation Violations

Ohio interlock violations

An interlock is a device that is attached to your vehicle which, they say, measures the alcohol in your breath.

Habeas Corpus Petition

Commercial Driver's License

Issues with a Commercial Driver's License (CDL)


School disciplinary hearings

Ohio Veteran Issues

Ohio veteran issues

Finding a lost animal / Rescuing or adopting a lost animal

Finding a lost animal / Rescuing or adopting a lost animal

Your Interface

The interface between you and your attorney and then the courts will determine how efficient the process of defending you proceeds.  It is vitally important that the communication link between you and your attorney be open as possible.  Much needs to be done.  It must be done efficiently.


If you need immediate advice, call now.  I will make every effort to either take your call or call you back as soon as I can.

It is not required that you take a day off work to meet with me.  I will make every effort to schedule appointments that work with your schedule.

I serve all of Northeastern Ohio

I serve all of Northeast Ohio's Courts of Common Pleas, including Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, Lorain County Court of Common Pleas, Medina Court of Common Pleas, Summit County Court of Common Pleas, Geauga County Court of Common Pleas, Portage County Court of Common Pleas, Lake County Court of Common Pleas, Erie County Court of Common Pleas, Sandusky County Court of Common Pleas and Huron County Court of Common Pleas.

I serve all of Cuyahoga County's municipal courts, including Bedford Municipal Court, Berea Municipal Court, Cleveland Municipal Court, Cleveland Heights Municipal Court, East Cleveland Municipal Court, Euclid Municipal Court, Garfield Heights Municipal Court, Lakewood Municipal Court, Lyndhurst Municipal Court, Parma Municipal Court, Rocky River Municipal Court, Shaker Heights Municipal Court, and South Euclid Municipal Court.

In Lorain County I serve the Avon Lake Municipal Court, Elyria Municipal Court, Lorain Municipal Court, Oberlin Municipal Court, Vermillion Municipal Court. In Medina County I serve Medina Municipal Court and Wadsworth Municipal Court. In Huron County I serve the Huron Municipal Court, Vermillion Municipal Court and Sandusky Municipal Court.

In Summit County and Portage County I serve the Akron Municipal Court, Barberton Municipal Court, Stow Municipal Court and Portage Municipal Court. In Lake County I serve the Mentor Municipal Court, Painesville Municipal Court and Willoughby Municipal Court. In Geauga County I serve the Chardon Municipal Court.


Elderly Woman Saved from a Guardianship

My client's daughter decided she had enough.  A local police department had been calling to complain about my client who had gone off her medication.  She was causing a problem in her neighborhood.  Daughter decided to obtain guardianship over her mother with the goal of removing her from her home.  My client was to be placed in a nursing home.

My client ended up in Lutheran Hospital's geriatric psychiatric ward.  The good doctors at Lutheran were able to determine that my client couldn't afford the brand name prescriptions she had been prescribed.  Generic prescriptions were available at a small fraction of the cost.  My client stabilized on the new medicine and showed no symptoms of her prior illness.

I was able to argue that my client's basic rights to determine her own affairs should not be removed.  After a second examination my client's daughter's attempt to obtain guardianship was denied.  My client was free to control her own affairs.  She returned to her own home.

Internet:  Blackmail

My client met a girl on-line and they became friends.  This led to a sexual encounter that was terminated with the girl demanding that my client pay him or that she would tell his wife, accuse him of crimes and ruin his life.  I first insured that all criminal matters were properly reported and then gave counseling as to what might happen should the girl press the issue.  The girl faded back into anonminity.

Internet:  Abuse of a teacher by a group of students

While students have a well-protected right to their opinions of their teachers, they hold no right to defame them.  Here a group of students began harassing a teacher by commenting on what they perceived to be problems with her physical sexuality.  They also suggested they should have blown up the school.  While most schools would react with an aggressive police investigation, this particular school was laissez-faire in their attitude.  I was retained and forced the criminal investigation around the school and directly to the police.  I then made it known through the community that while the teacher just wanted to be free of the defamation, that same defamation opened the parents to significant liability.  The abuse was terminated.

Enabled daughter brings domestic violence charges against Father

Dad provided well for his 21 year old daughter. He provided her with room and board, paid for her college, paid for her car, paid for the daughter's 2 year old child's room and board, diapers, clothes and other items. Daughter was collecting over $500.00 in child support that Dad never saw. Dad's pay-back? An allegation of domestic violence that cost him three days in jail until he could be arraigned. Dad hired me. Dad had the support of the entire family and I used that support to describe to the prosecutor why the case should not be tried. The case was dismissed at the first pretrial.

Cleveland Click-It-Or-Ticket OVI dismissed

My client was stopped at a sobriety check point.  Having an attorney that understands the workings of these check points is vitally important.  In this case, my client was cited for having a blood alcohol reading of 0.48 grams per 210 liters of breath.  You are normally dead if your BAC hits 0.35.  You're in a coma long before that.  Never mind, the operator of the testing device had to operate the machine while talking on a cell phone.  That's a big problem as their machines cannot have radio frequency interference in the area.  Never mind the one officer was going to release my client but was countermanded by his sergeant.  The list of errors went on and on.  In the end, my client plead to a no-point seat belt violation, paid his $170.00 and went home.  He really wasn't wearing his seat belt.

If you have a "Click it or Ticket" OVI, make sure you get an attorney.  My experience, both as a defense attorney and through my thirty-two years as a police officer, is that these are assembly line operations that greatly increase the chance of error.  Also, if they aren't getting enough tickets to pay for the cost of the check point, it appears they lower their standards and start arresting borderline cases.  In the above case, my client's actual BAC was 0.048, not 0.480.  A reading of 0.048 proves his blood alcohol is well under the legal limit of 0.08.

Is it domestic violence when two brothers push at each other over who has the next turn at the Nintendo?

Is it domestic violence? Probably. Is it just?

Here the state attempts to assign to one brother a serious crime of violence with significant life-long consequences. Here two young brothers pushed at each other. There were no injuries. Neither wanted the police, or charges, or the arrest and weekend in jail.

The charge was dismissed on the day of trial.

Trespassing?  Dismissed!

During a trial to the bench, the officer was unable to testify that my client had been advised to stay off a particular piece of property, property that was shared between two homes.

The trial ended in what is called a Rule 29 dismissal.  That occurs when after the state gives all its evidence, and taking that evidence in the light most favorable to the prosecutor, at least one element of the crime remains unproven.

This trial was ended in a Rule 29 dismissal.

Theft:  Misuse of credit card wasn't

After being caught shoplifting, D.R. tried to pay for the merchandise with another person's credit card.  She was charged with Receiving Stolen Property.  I was able to demonstrate that the owner of the card allowed D.R. to use the card; the card was not stolen.  D.R. pled to attempted theft.

OVI:  Second offense driving while intoxicated reduced

After a prior arrest for driving while intoxicated, my client pled guilty at his arraignment and did all that the first court asked.  When arrested again the client came to me.  He faced the longer second-offense mandatory jail time.  Here he would have been required to serve ten consecutive days.  I was able to show that there was no evidence that during the first sentencing his rights were properly explained to him.  This led to a reduction of his charge back to a first offense and my client escaped jail time.  He instead attended the standard 72 hour class for first offenders.

Grandparent attacks children's mother -- Mom keeps the kids

My client was demonized when she left Ohio with her children while her husband was terminally ill.  She was the lead story on one of the evening news broadcasts:  Mother kidnaps children!!  Dying dad denied kids!!  Poppycock!

REMEMBER THIS:  The word "news" has nothing to do with the words "truth" or "justice".  "News" sells advertising.  I will speak truth for you.  "Justice" is a toss up.

The real story was that when her husband became ill, my client was unable to care for herself and the kids.  She had been a stay-at-home Mom to four kids, ages seven to three.  She moved to out of state, to where her family lived.  They took her and the kids in so that she could get her legs under her again.

Her husband called and felt his condition had worsened and asked to see the kids.  She immediately left for Ohio and provided him with a great deal of visitation.  But while here, his family moved to take the kids.  First, they filed legal papers trying to get custody.  Second, they took her van and refused to get it for her.  Third, for the second time they physically took the kids from her.  The police became involved and forced the grandparent to turn the kids over to the mother.  She had enough!  She went back home to her out-of-state relative.

A legal battle was waged in the domestic relations court until her husband passed.  The case was closed.  She rightfully kept custody of her children.