Toledo man loses appeal in Rossford burglary case

A former Toledo man who last year entered a Rossford convenience store brandishing a gun has lost his appeal.

William Henley, 39, was found guilty of entering a Rossford convenience store in January 2022 and showing a firearm to the cashier. He took $125 from the cash register.

Rossford police officers eventually located him hiding in a nearby van.

Henley pleaded guilty to burglary, a second-degree felony, and was sentenced in April for a minimum seven years and a maximum of 10.5 years in prison.

At sentencing, defense counsel said the state had agreed to limit its sentencing recommendation to four years, according to court documents.

The prosecutor said that original plea negotiations included a recommendation for four years; however, the deal that Henley actually pleaded to was that the state was free to recommend a sentence. The state recommended seven years.

In his appeal, Henley claimed the court erred by ordering a sentence that was not supported by the record and was therefore contrary to law. He also said that he had received ineffective counsel.

He argued that the sentence was contrary to law because the court did not provide enough explanation regarding its consideration and the record did not support such a lengthy sentence.

A trial court is not required to give explanations regarding its considerations during sentencing, the appeals judges wrote in their decision, and thus the issue is not subject to appeals court review.

Henley also claimed his counsel had failed to pursue a plea agreement that included a stipulated four-year sentence.

Since he did not argue that his plea was involuntary because he believed the state had agreed to the lesser sentence, he waived the ineffective assistance of counsel argument, according to appeals court documents.

The court record does not identify whether the state offered the lesser sentence as a potential agreement, only that his counsel had secured a favorable plea agreement on his behalf: the reduction of the offense from to the lesser second-degree felony from a first-degree felony, according to the appeals court.

The court on Feb. 10 affirmed the sentence.

On Jan. 15, 2022, Henley entered the Stop and Shop in the 900 block of Dixie Highway and pointed a handgun at the clerk before taking money and fleeing.

Police located a man matching the description given them near a parking lot in the 200 block of Eagle Point Road. Henley took off running when police called to him.

Officers were told by a civilian that he had entered a silver minivan. Police stopped the vehicle and arrested Henley and the driver.

Henley remains incarcerated in the Richland Correctional Institution in Mansfield.