Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

The People v. Winters

SEPTEMBER 14, 1971.

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,

v.

JOSEPH WINTERS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. DANIEL J. RYAN, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE STAMOS DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Defendant appeals and contends that the sentences imposed were excessive and should be reduced by this court and that the court failed to conduct an adequate hearing in aggravation and mitigation.

Defendant entered pleas of guilty to the crimes of armed robbery and murder. The murder was committed in the pursuance of armed robbery. He was sentenced to a term of 10 years to 20 years on the armed robbery indictment and 40 years to 100 years on the murder indictment, to run concurrently. There is no dispute that defendant was properly admonished as to the consequences of his pleas of guilty and his right to a jury trial on each indictment.

At the time of defendant's withdrawal of his previous pleas of not guilty, his counsel expressed the following:

"As your Honor knows, we have spent the past hour-and-a-half to two hours in conference with yourself, the State's Attorney, and I have also spent part of that time in consultation with the defendant, Joseph Winters, with his parents, with his girlfriend, that my client advises me at this time that he wishes to withdraw his plea of not guilty to both indictments."

In admonishing defendant as to the consequences of his pleas of guilty the court advised defendant that the murder indictment was predicated upon defendant's taking the life of the victim, Paul Gans, and the armed robbery indictment was predicated upon defendant taking a watch from the victim.

The State's Attorney read into the record a stipulation between that office and defendant in his proper person and through his attorney that defendant was nineteen years of age and that if police officer Richard Sandberg, who was present in court, was called upon to testify, he would relate that he was assigned to investigate the homicide of Paul Gans that took place near 25 South Seeley, Chicago, Illinois. During the investigation, defendant was apprehended and gave two statements. In these statements defendant related that he shot the victim.

The State's Attorney then addressed the court as follows: "Your Honor, based upon the facts in this case, a felony murder, and with the only mitigation that we can see in this case being the plea of guilty entered by the defendant in his own proper person and through his attorney * * *."

The State's Attorney then recommended a sentence of 50 to 100 years as to the murder and a sentence of 10 to 20 years as to the armed robbery.

Defendant's counsel then said: "If your Honor please, in mitigation, I would like to point out to the court as follows: At the time this incident allegedly occurred, Mr. Winters was 18 years of age. Mr. Winters and the State can verify this. Has no previous criminal record of any kind whatsoever. Mr. Winters is the father of a young baby, and his girlfriend is here in court. Up until and including this particular incident, Mr. Winters was an exemplary citizen [sic] and unfortunately was involved in this incident which, of which he is most sorry. I feel, your Honor, that under the circumstances, the man's previous record, the willingness of Mr. Winters and his family to cooperate with this State in this incident that your Honor should give ultimate consideration to reducing these charges, number one, and, also, with reference to the time herein involved, your Honor, that Mr. Winters be given no more than 20 to 30 years on these particular charges to run concurrently."

Defendant contends that the trial court failed to hold a hearing in aggravation and mitigation pursuant to statute. Defendant further contends that there was a mere "pseudo-hearing" and the court was not in possession of the fullest possible information concerning the defendant.

• 1 The defendant relies on People v. Smice (1967), 79 Ill. App.2d 348 which holds that such a hearing is mandatory unless understandingly waived by the defendant; and People v. Evrard (1965), 55 Ill. App.2d 270, which holds that a trial judge must be in possession of the fullest possible information concerning the defendant's life in order to select the appropriate sentence.

• 2 In the case at bar the court provided both the prosecutor and defendant's counsel an opportunity to present matters in aggravation and mitigation pursuant to ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.