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People v. Miller

DECEMBER 2, 1974.

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

v.

RICHARD MILLER, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Pope County; the Hon. R. GERALD TRAMPE, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE EBERSPACHER DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Rehearing denied December 30, 1974.

This is an appeal by the defendant, Richard Miller, from judgment of conviction entered, on a jury verdict of guilty, by the circuit court of Pope County for the offense of theft under $150 and the imposition of a sentence of 270 days at the state farm.

The defendant raises two issues in this appeal: first, that the information charging him with theft is fatally defective because it fails to allege that defendant obtained "unauthorized" control over the property in question; and secondly, that he was not proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The relevant portion of the information charging the defendant read as follows,

"* * * on the 25th day of October, A.D. 1972, at or about the hour of 7:30 P.M., the offense of Theft was committed in said County, at the property of said Randall Doty, situated in the County of Pope, State of Illinois, that said offense was then and there committed by Richard D. Miller, in that Richard D. Miller, did then and there knowingly obtain control over certain property, to-wit: Copper Cable Wire and Lightning Rod, of a value of less than $150.00, then and there being the property of Randall Doty, with the intent to deprive said Randall Doty permanently of the use and benefit of said property, contrary to the provisions of Paragraph 16-1, Chapter 38, Illinois Revised Statutes * * *."

Section 16-1 of the Criminal Code (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1971, ch. 38, par. 16-1) provides in part:

"A person commits theft when he knowingly:

(a) Obtains or exerts unauthorized control over property of the owner; or

(b) Obtains by deception control over property of the owner; or

(c) Obtains by threat control over property of the owner; or

(d) * * *, and

(1) intends to deprive the owner permanently of the use or benefit of the property; * * *"

The defendant, relying principally upon People v. Stewart, 3 Ill. App.3d 699, 279 N.E.2d 53, contends that the failure to allege that the control, acquired by the defendant over the property in question, was "unauthorized," or obtained by "deception" or "threat" renders the information invalid. In People v. Stewart, this court, under a ...


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