APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. LOUIS
A. WEXLER, Judge, presiding.
MR. JUSTICE O'CONNOR DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:
Defendants Johnny Veal and George Clifford Knights were found guilty by a jury of the July 17, 1970, murders of police officers James Severin and Anthony Rizzato. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1969, ch. 38, par. 9-1.) Defendants' post-trial motions were denied. Each defendant was sentenced to the Illinois State Penitentiary for a term of not less than 100 years nor more than 199 years for each murder, the sentences to run concurrently.
Defendants appeal, contending that their convictions should be reversed or that they should be granted a new trial because (1) the prosecution suppressed and failed to disclose to the defense the fact that juvenile charges were pending against two key State's witnesses; (2) the prosecution suppressed evidence highly favorable to the defense; (3) defendants were denied their constitutional rights to a trial by a fair and impartial jury and their constitutional due process rights to a fair trial; (4) the trial judge improperly declined to recuse himself from presiding over the hearing on the post-trial motions; (5) the trial court improperly excluded defendant Veal's alibi defense; (6) the assistant State's attorneys made prejudicial and uncalled-for remarks during their closing arguments; (7) defendant Veal was not proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; (8) defendant Knights was not proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; (9) the trial court improperly inspected documents in camera and released to defense counsel only parts of those documents; and (10) the jury was improperly instructed.
On July 17, 1970, while on duty as officers assigned to the Chicago Police Department's "Walk and Talk" community relations unit in the Cabrini-Green area, Sergeant James Severin and Patrolman Anthony Rizzato were killed by sniper gunfire. The Cabrini-Green area, is a housing project in Chicago, consisting of several high-rise buildings and row houses of approximately 3600 apartment units, with a population of 17,000 or 18,000 people. The high-rise buildings at 1150-1160 North Sedgwick and 1117-1119 North Cleveland overlook an open area which includes a baseball field. The 1150-1160 North Sedgwick building is north and the 1117-1119 North Cleveland building is west of the baseball field. The windows in the apartments numbered 02 on the south end of the 1150 building are in the bathrooms and face south.
William Dyson testified that he belonged to the Black Deuces, a street gang. Defendant Veal, as did Jake Davis, belonged to the Stones, whose full name is Black P. Stones. Dyson was an enemy of Veal in a sense, i.e., both he and Veal are black and in that sense not enemies; otherwise, they were. He testified that about 7 p.m. on July 17, 1970, he was in the breezeway of 1119 North Cleveland and saw the police officers as they were shot. They were south of the 1150 North Sedgwick building. Later, at about 8 or 8:30 p.m., he was at the corner of Division and Cleveland Streets with Butch and Scoop Malone. There he saw defendant Veal, who was with Jake Davis. Others were present who were Black Deuces, but he didn't remember their names. Veal said to him, "What's happening? You lucky, I had my scope on you, but you left." "See how the Stones do it, let's see if you all can get three of them." This latter statement was directed to William Dyson's group, the Black Deuces. William Dyson knew what defendant Veal was referring to. Veal didn't say "he" shot the police officers; he said, "we." William Dyson also knew that defendant Veal, when he said, "I had you in my scope," meant that he had Dyson in his gunsights to shoot him.
Roosevelt Moore testified that on July 17, 1970, he was in the parking lot on the east side of 1150 North Sedgwick when the two police officers were shot. He saw them in front of 1117-1119 North Cleveland, walking north toward the high-rise building at 1157 North Cleveland. He heard a blast like a shotgun from the south side of 1150 North Sedgwick, which faced the baseball field. The two officers started east toward the 1150 building. As they reached the side of that building, two shots came from the south side of that building. One officer fell instantly; the other hesitated three or four seconds and then fell. Both were on the south side of the 1150 building. At the time of the shootings he did not see either defendant Knights or Veal, both of whom he knew, although he had seen them in the parking lot during the three or four hours he had been in the parking lot prior to the shootings. There were no adults in the parking lot at the time of the shooting that he could recall.
About 9 or 10 p.m. that evening he saw defendant Knights in front of his (Moore's) apartment at 1157 North Sedgwick. Knights and three others were walking south on the east side of Sedgwick. They were talking and Roosevelt Moore heard Knights say, "I told you I was going to get two of those white mother fuckers."
George Boone testified that in July 1970 he was employed by Wells-Fargo as a security guard and was assigned to operate the closed circuit television monitoring room at 1160 North Sedgwick and to patrol the stairways and halls there. He knew defendants Veal and Knights. At about 6 p.m. on July 17, 1970, he saw defendant Veal with other boys, including Jerry Davis, in the parking lot at 1150 North Sedgwick. Veal asked him if the south side apartments on the 6th floor were empty. He told Veal that about all the apartments up there were vacant. Veal said, "I guess I'll check it out." Boone saw him enter the 1150 North Sedgwick building. About twenty minutes later he saw Veal on the sidewalk east of the entrance to the 1150 building. Defendant Veal was with defendant Knights. Boone was only one parking space away from defendants, who were talking. Four or five other men were there. Veal was asking the fellows about some .30-.30's. He said, "I need some .30-.30's." Knights did not say anything. Boone last saw the defendants and the others in front of the 1150 building.
Later, while Boone was playing ball on the baseball field at the south end of the building with a boy and Norman Gibson, he heard a loud sound like a firecracker or cherry bomb. The sound came from the 1150 building. Then he heard a shot and saw a gun barrel sticking out of a window of the 1150 building. Everyone on the ball field ran. Boone and his two companions started back toward that building and stopped at the south end of it. After a second shot was fired, it became quiet. Boone looked up at the 1150 building and toward the building at 1117 North Cleveland. He saw a man in the 11th floor breezeway of the 1117 building looking with binoculars at the 1150 North Sedgwick building. He recognized the man as Ronnie Dykes, the leader of a gang. Dykes then went back into the breezeway. Boone also saw six or seven members of the Deuces gang with Dykes. They had rifles and shotguns. Dykes did not have a gun.
Boone then saw several police on the baseball field. After two police officers cut across the ball field, they started to walk toward the 1150 North Sedgwick building. Boone heard a clicking sound from the 1150 building. It was the sound of a weapon. One of the officers approached the building from the baseball diamond. Boone looked up at that building and saw a gun barrel sticking out of a window six floors up. He was still watching the building and the rifle barrel when it went off. Boone saw the officer fall. Boone then went down toward the entrance of 1150. At the time of the shot, neither defendant Veal nor Knights was in Boone's sight.
Police officer Thomas Wilczenski testified that he and his partner, Officer Thomas McNally, after receiving a radio distress call after 7 p.m. on July 17, 1970, went to the ball field near the 1150-1160 North Sedgwick building. They saw two police officers lying on the ground and several police cars behind which police officers were crouching. He assisted in placing one of the fallen police officers into a police car as bullets were striking the field. The shots sounded like they were coming from 1150 North Sedgwick and 1119 North Cleveland. After hearing the shots, he ran to the southeast corner of the 1150 building and looking north along the eastern edge of that building saw defendant Knights, whom he knew, come out of the breezeway of that building. Knights was with seven or eight children. Knights was standing in the midst of the children on a little sidewalk just east of that building.
Police officer Thomas McNally, Wilczenski's partner, testified that while the two officers were lying on the ground and other officers were crouched behind squad cars, dirt was being kicked up by projectiles striking the ground. He directed fire at the south end of 1150 North Sedgwick from approximately the fourth or fifth floor upwards as a cover for the police. He ran to the southeast corner of the 1150 building. He directed his attention to shots from approximately the third floor from the top of the 1117-1119 North Cleveland building. He also directed his attention to the upper floors of 1150 North Sedgwick. He looked along the east side of the latter building and saw defendant Knights, whom he knew, outside of the breezeway with seven or eight youths, four or five of whom were small children. He had heard and observed the shots before seeing Knights coming out. The only other people he saw at or near the parking lot at that time were two police officers.
Police officer Clarence Lewis testified that on July 17, 1970, Officer Anthony Rizzato was his partner and Sergeant Severin was his supervisor in the Police Department's "Walk and Talk" Community Relations Unit. As Lewis and Sergeant Severin were walking from the Security Building at 418 West Oak Street toward the 1150 North Sedgwick building, they met Officer Brauchler and others. Severin pointed to the 4th floor window of the 1150 building which had a white curtain in it and said that shots had been fired from that window; he had received that information from Earl Quinn, who lived at 1117 North Cleveland. After Officer Lewis, Sergeant Severin, Officer Rizzato and one other police officer arrived at the 1119 North Cleveland building, Officer Lewis stopped and saw Officer Rizzato, with Sergeant Severin following, walk east across the ball field. When the two had gone about then feet past the 1150 North Sedgwick building, they stopped and then started to walk back west. Lewis heard two shots. At the first shot, Sergeant Severin fell; at the second, Rizzato. Lewis knew that the shots had not come from the 1117-1119 North Cleveland building. He did not knew where they came from. Squad cars came to pick up the two fallen police officers. Lewis heard more shots and saw the ground erupt where the officers were standing trying to put the two into squad cars.
Police sergeants Edward Stepter and John Sandifer and Police officer Sargus testified that when the bodies of the two police officers were removed from the ball field by squad cars, shots were hitting the ground around the squad cars.
It was stipulated that if Dr. Jerry Kearns, the coroner's pathologist, were called as a witness, he would testify that he performed autopsies on the bodies of the two police officers on July 18, 1970. In his professional opinion, the cause of Officer Rizzato's death was a bullet wound of the heart, the path of which was downward, and the cause of death of Sergeant Severin was a bullet wound of the liver, the path of which was downward.
Jerry Davis testified that on July 17, 1970, he lived at 1157 North Cleveland. He saw defendant Veal about noon that day in the parking lot at 1150 North Sedgwick. Present with him were Calvin Murdock, Johnny Smith and Jake Davis (Jerry Davis' twin brother). Defendant Veal said, "Go to the 6th floor." Jerry Davis and Calvin Murdock said they didn't want to go. Veal said, "you'd better go." All four went with Veal to Apartment 603, which was vacant. It faced east on Sedgwick Street. Veal looked out the window and said, "Here's where we're going to start to ice the police from" By "ice", he meant "kill." Jerry Davis and Murdock laughed because they didn't believe it. All then came downstairs. Before 6 p.m. that day, while sitting on the steps of 1157 North Sedgwick with Swan Cook and Jean Moore, he again saw Veal.
Later, about 9:45 p.m., while he was sitting on the steps of 1157 North Sedgwick, across from 1150 North Sedgwick, with Swan Cook, Jean Moore, Veraline Simes, he saw defendant Knights and two others walking and drinking a can of beer. Knights stopped and said to him, "I shot the fuck out of those two police." Knights held out his hand and Jerry Davis "gave him five," slapping his hand on top of Knights', who then walked away.
Jerry Davis, his brother Jake, defendant Veal and Daryl Faulkner all belonged to the Cobra Stones. Defendant Veal was an ambassador in the Cobra Stones; an ambassador is almost a chief.
Jake Davis testified that on July 17, 1970, at about 10 a.m., he saw defendant Veal with defendant Knights and a person named George in the breezeway of the 1150 building. Veal was talking to them about some wine. Veal asked Knights, "Are you still going to give me those shells?" and Knights said, "Wait." Veal asked Jake Davis if he had a rifle. Jake said that he had a .22 rifle in his pants, which he had got from Veal. Jake told Veal he was going to take it over to 1157 North Sedgwick and put it behind the wall. Veal said he would come back and get it. Jake put the rifle there and saw Veal get it.
Later that day, Jake, who was with his brother Jerry, Johnny Smith and Calvin Murdock, saw Veal in the parking lot. Veal told them to come and go to the 6th floor with him. Jerry Davis, Johnny Smith and Calvin Murdock said they "ain't set to go." Veal said they had better come. They all went up to Apartment 603 in the 1150 building. Veal looked out the window and said, "This is where we are going to start icing the police." "Ice" means "kill." Jake, Jerry and Murdock started laughing like they didn't believe it. Veal said we got one in 602, here is the key. He had a key at that time.
Later, about two or three hours after 10 a.m., Jake Davis saw Veal in the parking lot with Knights, Sidney Bennett and Boomie (Vernon Baker). He overheard a conversation in which Knights asked Veal, he said, "We are going to kill the police?" and Veal said, "Yes, the police don't mean nothing to me anyway." Knights then asked Sidney Bennett, who said "Yes, they fired me up." Knights then asked Boomie and he said, "Yes, they locked me up." Right after that, Veal said, I'll be in 602 or 603" and Boomie said, "I'll be thinking about across the street."
Later, Jake Davis, while in the parking lot of the 1150 building, saw Veal coming out of the 1160 building with a guitar case. At an earlier time he had seen Veal with the guitar case open; inside was a .30-.30 Winchester rifle. Veal went to the 1150 building breezeway. After Jake Davis had seen Veal come out of the breezeway at 1160, he saw Knights with Sidney Bennett. They were coming around the part of the 1150 building which was near the ball field. They went into the 1150 building. Jake Davis saw two rifles at that time.
Some time later, Jake Davis went with Boomie and Paul Williams to a vacant apartment at 1157 North Sedgwick, right across the street from the 1150 building. Jake Davis saw the two police officers coming toward the 1117 North Cleveland building. They next walked on the ball field toward the 1150 North Sedgwick building. They reached the front end of the 1150 building, where the bathroom windows were. Jake Davis heard a loud shot; one of the police officers fell; then the other stumbled and fell. He looked out of the window and saw defendant Knights in a window on the 6th floor of the 1150 building. Knights was hanging a rifle out of the window. He also saw Sidney Bennett at a window in Apartment 603. In his statement to the police, Jake Davis said that a little while after the cessation of the shooting, which he had seen Knights doing at the police, he saw Knights and Veal looking out of an apartment window on the 8th floor.
That same evening, about an hour after the police were shot, Jake Davis saw William Dyson at Cleveland and Division Streets. Present were some Stones, some Blacks and defendant Veal. Veal told Dyson that he, Veal, had had Dyson in his scope at 602 and didn't know how he missed him. Dyson asked Veal who shot the police. Veal said, "We did."
A Stone came over and told Veal he had heard over one of the police squad cars a message to pick up Veal for killing the two police officers. Veal said he was going to take a ticket, which meant to leave. Jake Davis asked him where he was going. Veal said on 72nd and told Jake Davis that he (Jake Davis) was the only one who knew where he (Veal) was going and that if Veal was found he would kill Jake Davis. Veal then got on a bike and left.
Robert Curry testified that on July 17, 1970, he was a program coordinator for the National Youth Corps. On that day he saw Sergeant Severin from approximately 3:30 p.m. to 6:35 p.m. At about the end of that period, he and Sergeant Severin walked in a northerly direction on the ball field. He left Sergeant Severin at the edge of the parking lot of 1150-1160 North Sedgwick and walked across the street to get help to start his car, which was at the corner of Elm and Sedgwick Streets. While he was standing next to his car, four men walked up. One was defendant Veal, whom he knew, one was defendant Knights, whom he had never seen before; he did not know the names of the other two. Robert Curry had organized a baseball game in which Sergeant Severin and other policemen were acting as umpires. Defendant Knights asked Curry why he was having the "pigs" umpire the baseball game. One of the others, not defendant Veal, said that was all right, they would take care of it. Defendant Veal was carrying a guitar case. Defendant Knights was carrying something like an overnight case. The four men walked west on the fire lane between 1150 North Sedgwick and 1117 North Cleveland.
Cedric Langham testified that he was a correctional officer for the Cook County Sheriff and was working in one of the tiers in the Cook County Jail on March 17, 1970. Defendant Veal was in a conversation with eight or nine other inmates. He heard Veal say that when he got out he was going to kill either a couple of well-known gang leaders or a couple of cops; it was just a step to make a reputation.
George Williams, the janitor at the 1150 North Segwick building, testified that a 7 a.m. on July 18, 1970, he was cleaning and burning garbage in the incinerator room for about 50 minutes; that building is 19 stories and has an incinerator drop for the building on the east wall on each floor. The incinerator room, enclosed within a metal fence, is accessible only from the outside of the building. He locked the room and went to clean the lobby. When he returned, he found a live .30-.30 casing on the floor. He took it to the building manager and then returned and burned more garbage. He saw no weapons at that time. He went again to the lobby and returned to the incinerator room between 9 and 10 a.m. When he opened the incinerator, there were two rifles and some garbage lying inside. (One was a .30-.30 Savage and the other a .30-.30 Winchester.) The rifles were not there earlier when he was burning garbage. He could not rightfully say whether the door was locked or unlocked when he saw the rifles. He locked the incinerator room and told the building manager. The police came and retrieved the rifles.
Jake Davis testified that a year or more before the trial he had seen the .30-.30 Savage rifle in the janitor's room at the 1150 building. No one had it at that time. At another time he had seen that rifle with defendant Knights. On July 16 he had seen defendant Veal with the .30-.30 Winchester rifle. On July 11 defendant Veal had had it in a guitar case.
Police officer Orlando Bellini testified that on July 18, 1970, he went with two other officers to the incinerator room at 1150 North Sedgwick. He found two rifles in the garbage catch at the bottom of the garbage chute. After removing the rifles, he also removed and inspected the garbage and found a paper bag in which was a box containing .30-.30 ammunition and some papers. He did not recall whether he saw any live .30-.30 ammunition in the bag. He also found a telephone, with its cord indicating it had been pulled from a connection. Later, Officer Holt from the Crime Laboratory took the rifles, bag and telephone.
Police officer Earl A. Holt testified that he examined the rifles found in the incinerator room, but found no fingerprints suitable for comparison. He found two fingerprints on the cartridge box which was in the paper bag, one of which was suitable for comparison. There were no fingerprints on the bag. In the bag were two cash register receipts from J.W. Millikan, Hammond, Indiana. There were no fingerprints on them. He also found in the bag two live rounds of .30-.30 shells. They contained no fingerprints. Each rifle had one spent casing in it; there were no fingerprints on the casings. He found fingerprints on the telephone suitable for comparison. He also testified that in Apartment 602 on the bathroom mirror he found two fingerprints and one palm print suitable for comparison.
George Morganthaler testified that he was a clerk at J.W. Millikan's Sporting Goods store in Hammond, Indiana. On July 16, 1970, he sold two boxes of Winchester .30-.30 ammunition to a person who signed the required Federal disposition record "G.C. Knights" and that this signature corresponded with the writing on a driver's license presented by that person. He could not identify the purchaser by his face, but he recalled he showed him a sawed-off shotgun. He attached a gummed label containing the store's name to each of the boxes of ammunition.
David J. Purtell, a Police Department examiner of questioned documents testified that he had compared the name signed on the Federal disposition record at the Millikan Sporting Goods store with known samples of defendant Knights' signature and that in his opinion the name signed on the Federal disposition record was signed by defendant Knights and that the cash register receipts found in the incinerator room were from that store.
Joseph William Mortimer, a fingerprint technician, testified that he compared the fingerprints of defendant Knights with the fingerprint found on the ammunition box found in the incinerator room and that the latter fingerprint was that of defendant Knights. He also examined fingerprint and palm prints found in Apartment 602, but they were not those of defendant Veal or defendant Knights. The same was true as to the fingerprint found on the telephone.
It was stipulated that a representative of the Illinois Bell Telephone Company, if called as a witness, would testify that the telephone found in the incinerator room came from Apartment 1302 which had been vacated on July 11, 1970.
Nan Harper testified that she was a clerk in the Remirmelli Drug Store, located at 454 West Division Street, about one-half block from 1150 North Sedgwick. The store was owned by Marvin Solomon. She knew defendant Knights as a customer of the store. On July 8, 1970, Knights came into the store and asked to see Marvin Solomon. When he was unable to see him because Solomon was busy, Knights left a shell casing and said, "Tell Marv this is what I have been shooting." After showing the casing to Solomon, she put it in a box. On July 21, 1970, Solomon gave it to Officer Chowath. Later, two detectives brought the casing back and Solomon initialed it. Nan Harper identified the casing in court.
Marvin Solomon testified that he was the owner of the Remermelli Drug Store. On July 8, 1970, about 3 p.m., defendant Knights was in the drug store asking for him, but, because Solomon was busy, Knights left. Shortly thereafter, Nan Harper showed him a shell casing which Knights had left with her. Solomon gave it back to her and told her to throw it away. He later learned that she had not. On July 20, 1970, he saw the casing in the cigar box used to hold miscellaneous objects. He called the police and gave it to Officer Chowath, who later returned with Detectives Roppel and Durkin. Solomon marked the casing with his initial and Roppel and Durkin took it with them. At the trial, Solomon identified the casing.
On July 17, 1970, between 6 and 6:15 p.m., Solomon was inside the store behind a locked gate. He saw defendant Knights outside the store. Knights asked him if he had any .30-.30 shells. When Solomon said he did not, Knights said, "Maybe you would like to buy a .30-.30 Winchester, lever action." Solomon asked Knights if he had more than one rifle to sell. Knights said he had two rifles; the other was also a .30-.30, a Stevens bolt action with a high-powered scope. Solomon told him he would let him know if he wanted to purchase any of the rifles. People in the Cabrini-Green area knew that Solomon purchased guns. On one occasion he had purchased a .410 shotgun from Knights.
About one month before July 8, 1970, Knights had asked Solomon if he had any .30-.30 ammunition. When the latter said he had none and could not get any, Knights said, "I can go to Indiana and get any sized bullet I want" and Solomon told Knights that is what Knights should do.
Earlier, in December of 1969, Knights had asked Solomon if he had any .22 magnum shells. Solomon gave him three or four .22 rifle shells he had. At that time Knights said he had a .22 magnum with a scope and that he was real good with it, that scope is a beauty and that he could hit anything at 600 feet.
Officer Curtis Crisler testified that he had been assigned to the Cabrini-Green area for 12 years. He had known defendant Knights for 5, 6 or 7 years and had had conversations with him, usually in the parking lot in front of 1150-1160 North Sedgwick or in the vicinity of that building. Knights had been a janitor there.
In June or July of 1970 he had seen Knights in a window of the south side of the 1150 building on the 8th floor. Knights had held up something out of the window and hollered, "I've got it. Hey, Cris, I've got it." It looked like a rifle, although Officer Crisler was not sure it was a gun. Knights had said to Officer Crisler some time before July that he was going to buy some type of an army rifle to go deer hunting.
Officer Crisler had known defendant Veal 3 or 4 years. Veal had talked to him in July, before July 17, 1970, about a rifle. Veal had asked him if he knew where he could get a rifle fixed. Veal said it was a lever action rifle which, when it was cocked, wouldn't pick up the shell which had to be put in with the thumb. Veal wouldn't bring the rifle to Officer Crisler because, Veal said, Crisler would take it. Crisler said, "Go see Marvin, maybe he knows."
Police Technician Donald Gunnell testified that he and Officer Brooks, with metal detectors, made a search of the ball field and found bullets, lead fragments and a copper bullet jacket to which fibers were adhering. It was stipulated that if Officer Brooks were called as a witness, his testimony would corroborate that of Police Technician Gunnell. Donald Gunnell also testified that there was one area of blood in the ball field 176 feet southeast of the southern end of the 1150 North Sedgwick building and a second area of blood 36 feet farther south-southeasterly. The copper bullet jacket found was southeast of these two areas of blood.
The shirts worn by the two police officers were examined by Bernadette Kwak, a Police Department microanalyst. She also examined the fibers adhering to the copper bullet jacket found on the ball field. She testified that in her professional opinion the fibers of material which she had taken from Sergeant Severin's shirt and the fibers she had removed from the copper bullet jacket were all blue cotton. It was also her professional opinion that the copper bullet jacket had passed through something, possibly a type of animal which was covered with blue 100% cotton cloth.
Ernest Warner, a firearms examiner, testified that he examined and test-fired the Savage and Winchester rifles found in the incinerator room. In his professional opinion, the copper bullet jacket with fibers adhering to it found on the ball field had been fired from the Savage rifle and that the .30-.30 cartridge left at the drug store owned by Marvin Solomon had also been fired from the Savage rifle. In his test-firing of the Savage rifle he found it would not feed a second round of ammunition from the magazine into the chamber.
Earline Maten, who lived in Apartment 204 at 1150 North Sedgwick, testified for the defense that on July 17, 1970, about or 5:30 p.m., she was sitting with her children, facing east, on the steps in front of the 1150 building. She heard a shot, stood up, looked south and saw one of the police officers on the ground. She heard a second shot and saw the second officer fall next to the first one on the ball field next to the 1150 building. Defendant Knights was in the east parking lot at the rear of his auto when she heard the first shot, when she looked south and saw the officer on the ground, when she heard the second shot and when she saw the second officer fall. Defendant Knights grabbed her little baby boy Terrell and ran and all of them started up the steps. She met Mrs. Welch in the breezeway coming down after her boy. Earline Maten, her children, defendant Knights, Mrs. Welch and her son all went up the stairway in the 1150 building directly to Mrs. Welch's apartment, No. 207. Shots were coming from the 1117-1119 North Cleveland building. Defendant Knights left Mrs. Welch's apartment after the shooting had died down.
It sounded as if the shots came from the 1117-1119 North Cleveland building. She did not know where they did come from and did not know how many shots she had heard when the second officer fell. The shots could have come from anyplace.
When Knights was in the parking lot, present were the two Gibsons and a James, Jerry and David, whose last names she did not know. She (Earline Maten) was also present, as were her children and Mrs. Welch's child.
Earline Maten did not tell Officer Smith that she saw defendant Knights in the parking lot at the time of the shooting. She also testified that she had not said to Detective Northen that defendant Knights had come to Apartment 207 about five minutes after the shooting and had said, "Everything is all right. Don't worry." She has never seen anything in writing, other than the transcript of her direct testimony, which says anything about defendant Knights being in the parking lot at the time the officers were killed or about him picking up the child and going upstairs.
Mrs. Marsha Jones, who lived in Apartment 1102 at 1150 North Sedgwick, testified for the defense that on July 17, 1970, at about 7 p.m., she was getting her daughter ready for a weekend visit with her grandmother when she heard a shot from the side of the building in the back. She went downstairs with her daughter to meet her former husband in the east parking lot of the 1150 building. When she was in the breezeway, she heard a rifle shot which seemed to come from behind her. She ran out of the breezeway and down the steps. She heard another shot which came from behind the building and when she heard the second shot she was running out of the building. She saw people running toward the building and looking toward the ball field. She looked and saw one policeman go down and the second go over on his face. While running from the steps to her former husband's car she saw Earline Maten, defendant Knights, Norman Gibson, George Boone and many children. Knights and a man were sitting on a car right in front of the building. After putting her daughter in her former husband's car, she ran back toward the building. Defendant Knights was hollering and carrying a child, trying to get people and children into the building. Knights had Earline Maten's baby in his arms as he went up the first stairwell. The third shot she heard came from the side of the 1150 building behind her; it seemed to come from 1117-1119 North Cleveland. The first shot she had heard while in her apartment sounded like it came from the back side of the 1150 building, the southwest edge. After she came out of the breezeway, she saw defendant Knights and others in the vicinity of the walkway.
Miss Jackie Futrell testified for the defense that on July 17, 1970, at about 7 p.m., she was in Apartment 305 at 1119 North Cleveland. She saw two police officers run out into the ball field. When they got there, they fell. She heard shots and saw sparks from the 17th floor and some more from the 13th floor of the 1150 building.
Geneva Sandifer, who lived in Apartment 607 at 1119 North Cleveland, testified for the defense that on July 17, 1970, she heard a bang and looked out an east bedroom window directly above the baseball field. She saw one policeman starting across the ball field, northeast toward the 1150 building. When he got about to the end of the 1150 building, he waved. Another policeman followed. The first policeman had started back toward the 1119 building and when the two policemen got about 10 feet from each other, she heard a noise again. The first policeman, a sergeant, fell and Geneva Sandifer and her brother saw smoke coming from a window. When the sergeant fell, there was a pipe-like instrument hanging out the window of the 13th floor bathroom of the 1150 building. The second policeman turned around and started firing back at the 1150 building and then he fell. She heard no shooting after he fell until the patrol cars started coming in. After she saw the policemen go down, the sergeant didn't move again; the other policeman did. After a patrol car came, he helped himself in under his own power.
George R. Williams, who had testified for the State, was called by the defense. He stated that on July 17, 1970, at about 3:30 p.m., he drove into the parking lot behind 1160 North Sedgwick. He saw defendant Knights sitting in his car, drinking a pint of wine. The parking lot in which he saw Knights was northwest of the 1150-1160 building. The other parking lot for these buildings is east of the building. He (Williams) can look into the east parking lot from the bathroom windows in Apartment 405 in the 1150 building where he lives. These windows face east.
After seeing Knights in the west parking lot, Williams went to sleep in his apartment. He heard a shot, opened the window and heard another shot. He looked down into the east parking lot and saw Knights standing there. Mrs. Maten was standing near the fence. Williams called to Knights and asked him what was happening. Knights raised two fingers and said two policemen had just been shot. When Williams saw Knights below, Knights was gathering up some kids.
Because Williams had been asleep, he did not know how long before he woke up the police officers had been shot; nor did he know whether he was asleep when the officers were shot, nor when the officers were shot. When he went to the window, he heard more shooting. In his statement to defendant Knights' attorney, Williams said he heard shots and that he had told the police and one of the assistant State's attorneys that Knights could not possibly have shot the officers because he (Williams) is a very light sleeper and he heard some shots that awakened him and immediately jumped up, looked out the window and saw Knights. Williams is a friend of the Knights family.
Defendant Knights testified that he had been a janitor's helper assigned to the 1150 building. George Williams worked with him. As a janitor's helper, he did not have passkeys. His employment ceased in June or July of 1969. In October of that year he moved from the 1150 building to 862 North Sedgwick. He had a livery service in the 1150 building with George Williams, who would get phone calls and would then call down to Knights and tell him where to go.
Neither on July 8, 1970, nor on any other date did he go into the Remirmelli Drug Store and say to Nan Harper about the shell casing in his hand, "Tell Marv that this is what I shoot."
On July 16, 1970, he saw Boizell Wilson coming south from Division Street on the sidewalk in front of the 1150-1160 building. Knights was sitting in his car in front of the 1150 building. Wilson wanted to go to Hammond, Indiana, and Knights drove him there for $10. In Hammond, Wilson went into a department store, came out and asked Knights to buy some bullets for him because he could not buy them himself. Wilson wanted two boxes of .30-.30's and gave Knights $15. Both went into the store and Knights bought the shells, signing his name and address and his birth date on the Federal registration form. He did not attempt to conceal his handwriting and he showed the clerk identification.
After buying the shells, he gave them to Wilson once they were outside the store. He drove back to the 1150 building and pulled up in front of the breezeway. He got out of the car and sat on the front of it. Wilson walked up to George Boone, who was standing right outside the breezeway. Boone asked Wilson, "Did you get them?" Wilson said, "Yes." Both of them went into the 1150 building.
On July 17, 1970, Knights did not stand at the door of the drugstore and ask Marv Solomon for any .30-.30 bullets. Knights testified he had heard Solomon in court relate a conversation with him. Knights stated that that conversation never occurred. He never told Solomon he had two .30-.30's and a Winchester and a Savage.
On July 17, 1970, at or about 7 p.m., he was in front of the 1150 building. There he saw Mrs. Maten, Ray Gardner, Norman Gibson and Norman's father and several children.
Defendant Knights saw one of the police officers when he fell. At that time Knights was sitting on the front of his car in front of the 1150 building, talking with Mr. Gibson and Ray about relining some brakeshoes on Ray's car. They heard a shot. Knights did not pay any attention. Then they heard another shot and people started hollering. Knights looked towards the ball field and saw one policeman lying down and the other one fall. The latter was about on his knees and then fell down. It was not unusual to hear shots in the Cabrini-Green area.
Knights testified that when he saw the officer fall, chaos took place. People started running and hollering. Knights started getting the children into the building. Some of them had started running towards the ball field. He grabbed some of them and ran into the building. He does not know whether, as he did that, he saw Marsha Jones. He did not know which child he carried or if he carried a child into Apartment 207 or just to the porch. Mrs. Maten was out there. When he got in the breezeway he saw Mrs. Welch. She had just come down the stairwell. As he was going inside the building, he did not hear any other shots. Later he heard shots when he was in Apartment 207, where Mrs. Welch lived. He went there to get out of the way because he knew there was going to be more shooting. He did not know how long he stayed there. He left later. When sitting out in front of the 1150 building he had been drinking wine.
He did not shoot and kill the two police officers on July 17, 1970. He did not think he was in the 1150 building that day before the police were shot. On that date he did not belong to any youth gang, street gang or group. He has never been a member of or belonged to any street gang or youth group or gang. The vision in his right eye was very poor.
On cross-examination, defendant Knights said that on July 16, 1970, he did not have a driver's license. When driving to Hammond, Indiana, Wilson did not at any time say he was going to buy shells. Knights did not remember Morgenthaler selling the shells. He could not have shown the latter a driver's license because he did not have one and he was not with four or five people when he went into the Millikan store to buy the .30-.30 shells. The clerk placed the shells on the counter and Knights picked them up to show them to Wilson and asked if they were the kind he wanted. The clerk put the shells in a bag.
Knights never said to one of his friends or to anyone on July 17, 1970, about 9 or 10 p.m., "I told you I would get two of those white mother fuckers." Knights has never killed anyone.
Knights does not know Jerry Davis, Jake Davis or Robert Curry. He did not say to Robert Curry, "Why [do] the pigs have to umpire baseball games?" He did not remember talking to Officer Crisler about getting a gun. He never did. He does not remember yelling at Crisler out of a window and saying, "I've got it, Cris."
Knights' first recollection of July 17, 1970, was when the police officers got shot. That is the first thing he remembers about that day. At the time the police were shot, he was sitting on the closed trunk of his car. He did not know how long he had been there. He had been in the area all day. His car was parked in the east parking lot, directly in front of the breezeway of the 1150 building. When sitting on the trunk, he was facing the breezeway. He could not recall whether he heard any shots before he saw a policeman fall. He remembered hearing one shot before this policeman fell; he heard two shots. He looked toward the south end of the 1150 building, because that is where the shots sounded like they were coming from.
After he heard one shot, he yelled, "Two police have been shot." He was talking to George Williams, who was in his bathroom window and who had stuck his head out the window and asked Knights what had happened. At that time Knights was standing either in the walkway leading to the breezeway or on the sidewalk. He had no trouble hearing Williams, who was up on the 4th floor. Knights did not shout, "A policeman has been shot." He did not see Mrs. Maten run out from the stairs after he yelled. When he saw her, she was out on the walkway. Knights testified that all he heard was one shot. He also said he might have heard "shots" some time before the police were shot, but he does not remember any.
After Williams had hollered down and Knights told him what had happened, Knights started getting the children into the building. He thinks he picked up one of them. He ran into the building to get out of the way from in front of the building because there was going to be some more shooting. There was more from the ball field, from the fire lane, from the corner of the building, from the back of the building, from the air and from the top of cars and from behind cars. He did not see anybody shooting at that time. Later he saw a lot of people shooting. It could have been that as he ran through the breezeway he saw police shooting at the corner of the 1150 building, in the fire lane, the parking lots and a little field between two playgrounds. The police were shooting at the 1157 North Cleveland building and at the 1117-1119 North Cleveland building.
He went up the stairs. There were a lot of people trying to get up the stairs at the same time, including Mrs. Welch. He went to Apartment 207 and Mrs. Welch came in right behind him. Knights did not know which child he had carried or whether he carried a child into the apartment or just to the porch. He left there after the shooting subsided a bit. He couldn't say how long he ...