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People v. Salvaggio

OPINION FILED MAY 6, 1976.

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

v.

LAWRENCE SALVAGGIO, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. PHILIP B. BENEFIEL, Judge, presiding.

MR. PRESIDING JUSTICE MEJDA DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Defendant, Lawrence Salvaggio, pleaded guilty to the offenses of armed robbery, unlawful restraint, two counts of aggravated assault and a violation of bail bond. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1971, ch. 38, pars. 18-2, 10-3(a), 12-2(a)(1), and 32-10.) He was sentenced to the Illinois Department of Corrections for a term of not less than one and not more than three years for violation of bail bond, and to terms of not less than five and not more than nine years for each of the other offenses. The sentences were to run concurrently. On appeal defendant contends that the trial court erred in failing to determine whether the guilty pleas were voluntary and in failing to determine whether he was fit to be sentenced. In addition, he contends that the sentences imposed for unlawful restraint and aggravated assault were excessive.

A review of the record shows that defendant was indicted for armed robbery, unlawful restraint and two counts of aggravated assault, and that he entered a plea of not guilty to these charges on November 29, 1972. He was also indicted for violation of bail bond. On August 5, 1974, defendant appeared before the trial court with his attorney who requested a conference with the trial judge and the State's Attorney. The court explained to defendant what was likely to be discussed at the conference and that it might include a sentence recommendation. Defendant stated that he understood and that he had no objection to his attorney's entering into such negotiations. The conference was held out of the presence of defendant and when the case reconvened in open court defense counsel informed the court that defendant wished to withdraw his pleas of not guilty and enter pleas of guilty to both indictments. Before accepting the guilty pleas the court explained to defendant the charges against him and the possible sentences, and further admonished him as to his constitutional rights with respect to trial by jury. After defendant signed jury waiver forms the following exchange occurred:

"The Court: You are doing this without any compulsion or threat or promises other than what you may understand your attorney and the State's attorney have agreed to recommend should you plead guilty?

The Defendant: Yes.

The Court: They will be accepted. At this time do you wish to withdraw your plea of not guilty heretofore entered or do you wish to persist in your plea of guilty?

The Defendant: I want to withdraw my plea of not guilty.

The Court: How do you plead?

Mr. Gillman [defense counsel]: To each indictment your Honor, the defendant is pleading guilty.

The Court: And to each and every count of one indictment?

The Defendant: Yes.

The Court: And to the other indictment which is a one count indictment, you plead guilty to all the charges before the court?

The Defendant: Yes.

The Court: Is this plea of guilty made voluntarily of your own free will without any promises, inducements, threats or anything ...


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