Toledo man accused of rape will not defend himself


A Toledo man accused of rape who wanted to represent himself at trial has changed his mind.

John Gebrosky, 35, was transported from the jail Monday to the courtroom of Wood County Common Pleas Judge Joel Kuhlman.

Gebrosky was indicted in March 2022 for rape, a first-degree felony, and unlawful sexual conduct with a minor, a fourth-degree felony.

Last week, he requested to act as his own attorney for the trial scheduled for later this month on these charges.

The court didn’t rule on several motions filed by Gebrosky since it doesn’t recognize a hybrid defense, which is when both an attorney and the defendant act as defense council.

There are a lot of rules and procedures when conducting a trial, Kuhlman said, and no special privileges will be granted for defendants who defend themselves.

“I’m still learning about the procedures,” Gebrosky said.

After additional explanations of what he will need to do at trial, Kuhlman asked if Gebrosky still wanted to represent himself.

“I think so,” Gebrosky responded.

Gebrosky had asked in October that Merle Dech Jr. be appointed to represent him.

Earlier this month, he asked the court to remove Dech as counsel. Dech was appointed as advisory counsel for the purposes of the trial.

Dech is the third attorney to represent Gebrosky on this set of charges.

After a lengthy sidebar between Dech and Gebrosky, the defendant agreed to accept Dech as his attorney on record.

“I’m not adequate in the legal spectrum,” Gebrosky said.

His trial on these charges will begin Feb. 27.

Gebrosky was indicted in August 2021 for rape, a first-degree felony, and gross sexual imposition, a third-degree felony. A jury in September found him guilty of both charges and he will be sentenced March 15.

Gebrosky said he expected a fair and adequate attorney to represent him at trial, and he didn’t get that.

“That attorney told me up to trial how she would handle the case and then handled it differently,” he said.

Kuhlman disagreed, and asked Gebrosky if his perception of what happened at trial was due to its result.

“You had very fair representation,” he said.

Gebrosky countered with a list of comments his counsel made during the trial that alluded to his guilt, and that he had presented evidence to her that were never used.

“I’m concerned with the severity of the charges, that if you do defend yourself … you’re not going to get as good representation as you think you can provide,” Kuhlman said.

Wood County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Charles McDonald objected to Gebrosky’s plan to file for a retrial.

“Regardless any motion, a new trial is well outside the 14-day rule,” McDonald said.

Dech said he will be sending the evidence presented by his client to the appeals court with the argument for ineffective counsel at the September trial.

He remains in jail on a $200,000 bond.

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