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People v. Jackson

OCTOBER 20, 1971.

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

v.

ROOSEVELT JACKSON, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. ROBERT J. COLLINS, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE BURMAN DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

The defendant, Roosevelt Jackson, was charged in a two-count indictment with the offenses of rape and indecent liberties with a child. He entered a guilty plea to the charge of indecent liberties with a child, which was accepted by the trial court, and after a hearing in aggravation and mitigation he was sentenced to serve not less than four nor more than four years and one day in the Illinois State Penitentiary. The rape charge was dismissed on motion of the State.

The defendant contends on appeal (1) that his waiver of jury trial and his entry of a guilty plea were not voluntarily and understandingly made, (2) that he was deprived of due process because the hearing in mitigation was inadequate and (3) that the sentence imposed was excessive.

We shall first review the proceedings in the circuit court in order to place the contentions in proper context. The defendant was arraigned on November 20, 1968, and after the appointment of the Public Defender as his counsel, he entered a plea of not guilty. The Public Defender continued to represent him until February 27, 1969, when leave was given to Richard L. Vaughns, an attorney hired by the defendant's mother, to file an appearance and to substitute as the defendant's counsel. The cause was continued from time to time and set for trial on September 8, 1969. When the matter was first called for trial on that date, it was passed over so that the defendant would have an opportunity to confer with his mother. The case was then recalled and held for trial. As the cause was about to proceed to trial, the following colloquy occurred:

"THE COURT: Mr. Vaughns, it is now twelve o'clock. You have had an opportunity to confer with Mr. Jackson and his mother has talked to him. What is the situation?

MR. VAUGHNS: Yes, Your Honor. May it please the Court, at this time in Indictment 68-3853, in count 2 of said indictment, the charge of indecent liberties with a child, at this time the defendant wishes to withdraw his plea of not guilty and waive a jury trial and to enter a plea with reference to Count 2 of said indictment.

THE COURT: Have you talked to this defendant about the consequences of his plea, Mr. Vaughns?

MR. VAUGHNS: Yes, I have, Your Honor. I have advised the defendant that he can be upon his plea could be sentenced to an indeterminate term of not less than four years by Your Honor to the Illinois State Penitentiary.

THE COURT: Mr. Jackson, your attorney, Mr. Vaughns, advises me that you wish to change your plea of not guilty to the second count of this indictment which charges you with the crime of indecent liberties with a child to a plea of guilty, is that correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes, sir.

THE COURT: When you plead guilty, Mr. Jackson, you automatically waive your right to a jury trial, you understand that?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes, sir.

THE COURT: Before I will accept your plea of guilty it is my duty to advise you that on your plea of guilty to the second count of this indictment which as I have said charges you with the crime of indecent liberties with a child you may be sent to the penitentiary for a term of years. It may ...


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