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The People v. Green

OPINION FILED MAY 28, 1969.

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, APPELLEE,

v.

BERNARD GREEN, APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. PAUL E. GERRITY, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE SCHAEFER DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

The defendant, Bernard Green, was found guilty of petty theft after a bench trial in the circuit court of Cook County and was sentenced to one year at the Illinois State Farm. On this appeal he contends that he was deprived of his constitutional right to the assistance of counsel of his choice, that he did not knowingly waive a jury trial, and that he was not proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

We have concluded that the defendant's first contention must be sustained. It is therefore unnecessary to describe the facts beyond observing that the principal issue in the case concerned the identification of the defendant as one of the participants in a confidence game by means of which money was obtained from the complaining witness. It is also unnecessary to detail the circumstances under which the defendant's right to a trial by jury is said to have been waived.

The offense in question took place on May 17, 1968, and the defendant was arrested on that date. On the morning that the case was called for trial the second time, July 2, 1968, the defendant requested a continuance and the following colloquy took place:

"THE COURT: What is the reason for the continuance, Mr. Green?

MR. GREEN: Well, my lawyer hasn't come through.

THE COURT: Your lawyer what?

MR. GREEN: Haven't come through yet. I would like to have a short continuance.

THE CLERK: Who is your attorney?

MR. GREEN: He is in Washington on a case.

THE COURT: He is in Washington. What is his name?

MR. GREEN: I forgot his name. Got one of those funny names. He will be back shortly.

THE COURT: Did you pay this attorney a fee?

MR. GREEN: Well, everything is suppose to have been arranged. The lawyer is ...


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