Ohio Evid. R. 404(B) Interpretation

State v. Carillo (Oct. 13, 2000), Clark App. No. 00CR0003, 2000 Ohio App, involved Evid.R. 404(B) and Evid.R. 403(A) issues. In Carillo , the state sought to introduce evidence that the defendant was a member of a street gang who killed another member over a drug debt owed to the gang. The state presented extrinsic evidence regarding the gang, its drug activities, and the involvement of both the defendant and the victim. Id. The defendant sought to exclude this evidence on the grounds that such evidence of prior bad acts was specifically precluded by Evid.R. 404(B) and that the probative value of such evidence was outweighed by its highly prejudicial effect under Evid.R. 403(A). Id. The Second District Court of Appeals disagreed, holding that "such evidence was admissible to prove defendant's motive for murdering "the victim." Id. Further, the court held that "the evidence at issue was probative of those matters regarding motive and the circumstances of the relationship between the defendant and victim, and that probative value was not substantially outweighed by the danger of unfair prejudice." Id., citing State v. Bobo (1989), 65 Ohio App.3d 685, 585 N.E.2d 429.