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People v. Slaten

AUGUST 1, 1973.

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

v.

KENNETH SLATEN, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Jersey County; the Hon. PAUL C. VERTICCHIO, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE SIMKINS DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Defendant-appellant Kenneth Slaten appeals from a judgment dismissing his post-conviction petition in which he challenged the legal sufficiency of the indictment upon which his conviction was based, and also urges that he had not knowingly and intelligently waived his right to counsel.

On July 7, 1966, the grand jury returned a two count indictment. Count I charged defendant with burglary in that "* * * knowingly entered into a building, `The American Legion Club' at Grafton, Jersey County, Illinois with intent" etc. Count II charged defendant with the offense of theft under $150 of U.S. bills and currency, "* * * the property of the American Legion Club, Grafton, Illinois * * *."

On July 11, 1966, defendant appeared in court and was handed a copy of the indictment. The charges and penalties were explained to him. He was without counsel and entered a plea of not guilty. During this initial appearance before the court the following appears in the record:

"Q: Mr. Slaten, you have a right under the laws of the State of Illinois to be represented by an attorney. Do you intend to get an attorney to represent you?

A: No.

Q: You don't intend to retain an attorney?

A: I don't know just yet.

Q: If you desire, the Court will give you a continuance at this time, on the arraignment, to consult with an attorney and we will continue the arraignment until Wednesday morning, or we can go ahead without an attorney. If you can show the Court that you are an indigent person and don't have any funds to employ an attorney, the Court will appoint an attorney to represent you. Do you understand that?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you desire the Court to appoint an attorney or do you desire to have a Court-appointed attorney?

A: I believe I will wait and see if I can get me one.

Q: All right. At this time the Court will ask you how you plead?

A: Not guilty."

Defendant next appeared before the court on February 1, 1967. The following ...


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