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People v. Norfleet

MARCH 24, 1972.

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

v.

ROBERT NORFLEET ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLANTS.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. ROBERT J. COLLINS, Judge, presiding. MR. JUSTICE ENGLISH DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

OFFENSE CHARGED

Armed robbery. Ill. Rev. Stat. 1967, ch. 38, par. 18.2.

JUDGMENT

After a jury trial, all four defendants were found guilty and were sentenced to the following terms in the penitentiary: Joseph Blakely, 20 to 40 years; Arthur Blakely, 10 to 20 years; Willie Rutledge, 8 to 15 years; Robert Norfleet, 5 to 10 years.

POINTS RAISED ON APPEAL

Defendant Norfleet, in a separate appeal, contends he was not proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

All defendants contend: *fn1

1. The pre-trial identification procedure was unnecessarily suggestive and deprived defendants of due process of law.

2. The in-court identifications were inadmissible as not being based on observations of adequate independent origin.

3. The trial court erred in admitting evidence of an unrelated crime.

4. The sentences were excessive.

EVIDENCE

Clarence Mills, for the State:

He is a bus driver for the Chicago Transit Authority. On October 7, 1968, at approximately 10:30 P.M., four black male passengers boarded his bus at 5th Avenue and Pulaski in Chicago, and refused to pay. Also on the bus at the time was James Springfield, a uniformed security guard for Interstate Corporation whose employment required him to carry a revolver. Through a rear view mirror, the witness observed two of the men, later identified by him in court as defendants Joseph and Arthur Blakely, approach Springfield, knock him to the floor, and take his gun and glasses. Joseph Blakely then said, "I'm going to kill this security guard and the bus driver." Arthur said not to shoot, and, instead, directed Joseph to take the driver's money and coin changer. Whereupon, Joseph put the gun in the witness' face, threatened to kill him, and, with the assistance of Arthur, took the money — about $36. The four men left the bus at Central Park and Harrison, about four blocks from where they got on.

That night, between 1:00 and 2:00 A.M., he attended a line-up at the police station and identified Arthur and Joseph Blakely in a line-up of seven men. He could not make a positive identification of the other two men who had been on the bus, but he was positive as to ...


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