Madison County jurors found a London Correctional Institution inmate not guilty of forgery Wednesday morning after a full-day trial Tuesday.
Ramon A. Boyce, 29, was initially accused of forging a notary’s signature on documents between April 30 and Sept. 30, 2013.
The jury was dismissed early Tuesday evening after deciding to delay deliberations until Wednesday morning.
Boyce is currently serving an eight-year prison sentence for burglary and receiving stolen property in Clark County.
Ohio State Highway Patrol investigator Jim Schlotterbeck and LoCI investigator Matt Crisler both testified that documents were found in Boyce’s cell. The documents included what they believed to be a cut-out stamp with the notary’s forged signature and a document with the forged stamp on it.
The notary spoke as a witness, saying she never signed the specific document and the signature was forged.
Boyce’s attorney Fred Ballam said Boyce was in possession of the document in order to cut out the image on it for a poster he was creating. As a witness, Boyce claimed that he forgot to cut the notary’s information off the stamp.
Mahmud I. Morrar, an LoCI inmate who knew Boyce, testified for the defense. The documents allegedly found in Boyce’s cell had Morrar’s name on it. Morrar claimed as a defense witness that the document was signed and stamped by the notary, and Boyce did not forge the signature for him.
Assistant county prosecutor Nick Adkins asked Morrar if he was accusing the notary of lying. Morrar said he was not calling her a liar, and that he did not know what happened.
Boyce is due for release in July 2016. His not guilty verdict will prevent an additional six to 12 months prison time which could have been added to his term.
Adkins said he understood from the beginning that the case was based on circumstantial evidence. After talking to some jury members after the trial, Adkins said they thought long and hard about their ruling.
“They definitely took their obligation and duty seriously,” Adkins said. “There’s no doubt about that.”
Adkins said jury trials are often unpredictable.
“You never know what to expect in a jury trial, all I can ask for is a fair and impartial jury,” Adkins said.
Ballam said he thought the verdict was just.
“There simply wasn’t enough [evidence] there to convince a jury,” Ballam said.