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September 6, 2011

"OSU book thief sentenced to probation and restitution"

Because this new piece from the Columbus Dispatch, which has the same headline as this post, strikes very "close to home," I am not going to comment on the substance of this notable story of crime and punishment.  But, especially because I am pretty sure I never met the now-sentenced former-OSU-law student, I am interested in reader reactions:

A former Ohio State University student avoided prison today but likely has forfeited his future as a lawyer for stealing books from the Moritz College of Law.

In a deal that allowed him to escape jail time, Christopher B. Valdes, 24, formerly of the University District but now living with his mother in Florida, was placed on five years of probation and ordered to pay $34,619.88 in restitution for books he sold online.  As of this morning, Valdes has paid back $19,450.

Valdes also agreed that he “will not have or pursue employment or education in the field of law,” according to the details of his guilty plea in Franklin County Common Pleas Court.

Assistant Prosecutor John Litle said the ban on law school and practice is in place only for the five years of probation.  But Valdes would have to pass character and fitness requirements to become a lawyer.  “As a practical matter ... it’s unlikely that he can do that” because of the felony conviction, Litle said.

Valdes had been indicted on a fourth-degree felony count of theft that could have landed him in prison for up to 18 months.  He pleaded guilty in June to a lesser fifth-degree felony punishable by up to a year in prison.

Valdes, who is no longer a student at Ohio State, was accused by campus police of stealing more than 200 books between November 2009 and last October after advertising them for sale online.  Officers learned of the thefts in August 2010, when the university received an e-mail from a Brazilian lawyer who had bought a volume online and found a crossed-out OSU ink stamp on its inside front cover, according to court documents.

A check confirmed that the title had vanished from the shelves.  Valdes was arrested after police set up a sting involving a hidden camera and a marked book.

September 6, 2011 at 06:34 PM | Permalink


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I am sorry. What is this thing you call, "book?"

When were the last dates they were borrowed? The 1980's sometime? His crime benefited the library by reducing its trash bill. Why are defense lawyers such traitors to their clients? How can anyone charge a crime, when the victim has actually benefited? If the Law School carried theft insurance, there should be subrogation of any restitution. If there isn't, the defendant should sue the school for false arrest, unjust enrichment at the point of a gun, and ingratitude for the favor he did them, carrying out the trash.

Say, someone did borrow this thing you call, book. The content was filled with supernatural trash on every single page. This so called book was really like a bag of smelly garbage. Is it a crime or a favor if someone takes away your smelly garbage bags without permission? That is a crim law question for the students.

Did anyone see the shower scene from Psycho? That out of nowhere shocking stabbing, when the movie had been a bland, quiet movir about adulterers on the run for an hour. That zinging, spine chilling screeching violin music by Bernard Hermann? How did it make you feel?

You get the same exact terror filled, surprise, shocking feeling at every turn of every page of every law book. The lawyer has made life a waking nightmare for the American people.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 6, 2011 11:03:15 PM

lol seems he forgot the FIRST LAW! never steal from a LAWYER!

Posted by: rodsmith | Sep 7, 2011 12:06:09 AM

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