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In Re Fields

OPINION FILED MARCH 11, 1977.

IN RE MICHAEL FIELDS, A MINOR. — (THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PETITIONER-APPELLEE,

v.

MICHAEL FIELDS, RESPONDENT-APPELLANT.)



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. AUBREY F. KAPLAN, Judge, presiding. MR. JUSTICE LORENZ DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Respondent appeals from an order revoking his probation and committing him to the Department of Corrections. He contends that the court: (1) lacked jurisdiction to commit him, (2) failed to establish that there was a factual basis for his guilty plea, and (3) abused its discretion in committing him to the Department of Corrections.

On January 15, 1975, a petition for an adjudication of wardship was filed alleging that respondent "[O]n or about 8 January 1975 knwoingly [sic] obtained unautorized [sic] control over property, 1-ladies wristwatch and 250 pair shoe laces of the value of less $150.00 the property of Leo W. Jones, with the intent to deprive said Leo W. Jones permanently of the use and benefit of said property, in violation of Chapter 38 Section, 16-1(a) Illinois Revised Statutes." At the initial hearing held on January 16, 1975, it was discovered that respondent had been arrested at least four times in the previous year. The hearing was continued to determine if respondent was on probation. On January 20, 1975, the court established that on December 20, 1974, respondent had been adjudged delinquent on a charge of theft and placed on probation. Realizing that the instant action had been erroneously filed as an original petition the court suggested it be refiled as a supplemental petition. Thereafter, respondent's probation officer was asked by the court if he could "work" with respondent. He responded that he was assigned to the case on December 20, 1974, and that:

"If I go with just what I see on paper, I'd have to ask for a commitment. I haven't really been able to work with him."

The court then discussed with the probation officer and respondent's mother the possibility of respondent residing with two aunts in Maywood. The court directed that this possibility be explored further and ordered respondent held in custody pending a clinical examination.

On February 3, 1975, the State orally sought leave to amend its petition by striking the words "obtained unlawful control over property." The report of proceedings does not reflect what was inserted in place of the deletion. Thereafter, respondent, through his counsel, entered an admission to the amended petition. The court again reviewed the dispositional alternatives. The clinical investigation recommended a "residential treatment center." However, the respondent's probation officer felt that this was impractical because of respondent's age. After the court suggested referral to U.D.I.S., *fn1 the proceedings were continued in order to determine if U.D.I.S. would accept respondent.

On March 31, 1975, after the respondent's probation officer reported that U.D.I.S. was unable to accept respondent the court reviewed respondent's situation and ordered that he be held in custody pending a supplemental social investigation to update the original investigation which was incident to the initial probation. The court granted the State's oral motion to amend the original petition to a supplemental petition.

At the dispositional hearing held on April 14, 1975, the following colloquy occurred:

"THE COURT: For disposition and UDIS. UDIS won't take him?

PROBATION OFFICER: That was in February, Judge.

THE COURT: There is no place, is that right?

PROBATION OFFICER: Right now.

THE COURT: Well, I have read the social investigation report, I have seen Michael's history. Based on the social investigation report and my own contacts with Michael over an extended period of time, I order Michael committed to the Department of Corrections."

The probation officer then stated for the record his "attempts at working with Michael." He explained that respondent had been living with two aunts in Maywood and had "no problems." However, against his advice, respondent had returned to his old neighborhood and "got into trouble again." He noted ...


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