Location London Correctional Institution
Offenses Aggravated Murder, Burglary, Possession of Drugs
Sentence Min/Max 23 YEARS/LIFE
Date Admitted 12/13/2007
Next Eligibility Hearing Date 12/30/2021
In July of 1983, Ballein, his stepbrother and their two girlfriends sat around planning the murder of Ballein’s stepfather, Paul Holden, who Ballein claimed was an abusive parent. The following facts come from the First District Court of Appeals opinion in which they affirmed Ballein’s conviction.

Toward the evening of July 23, 1983, the two young men [Ballein and his stepbrother] received a call from Paul Holden asking them to pick him up from a bar to take him home. They did so and, while Holden ate seomthing, the four young people planned his murder and their alibis. They decided to wait until the intoxicated Holden passed out on his bed, which ultimately he did. After checking out how he lay on the bed, the defendant obtained an axe and his stepbrother a hammer. The defendant stood behind Holden while his stepbrother stood outside the bedroom door with a hammer. The defendant then drove the axe into Holden’s skull, inflicting a wound from which Holden subsequently died. The defendant was angry because his stepbrother did not help him and when the stepbrother asked the defendant to take the hammer “kill him the rest of the way,” he responded that the stepbrother was supposed to have done that.

The two young men then went downstairs to inform their girlfriends of what had transpired, and when they heard movement upstairs, all four fled the house. When their car would not start, the group split up and the defendant was arrested two days later hitchhiking in an adjoining county.

While Ballein was sentenced to the possibility of LIFE in prison, he was released early in the fall of 2006. He promptly reoffended. In January of 2007 he was convicted of possession of cocaine after he was found in possession of crack cocaine and a digital scale. Two weeks later, he was arrested in Clermont County for felony 2 burglary. He subsequently pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of felony 3 burglary and was sent back to the Department of Corrections.

For the cold blooded, premeditated execution of stepfather while he lay sleeping, Ballein was sentenced to LIFE in prison and that is where he belongs. He was given a second chance and immediately put society at risk. The Hamilton County Prosecutors Office strongly opposes early release for Michael Ballein.

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