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People v. Panus

OPINION FILED JULY 24, 1978.

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

v.

DONALD PANUS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Peoria County; the Hon. CHARLES M. WILSON, Judge, presiding.

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

The defendant, Donald Panus, was charged by a two-count indictment with the offense of burglary in count I and theft in count II. Prior to the selection of the jury, the State dismissed the second count charging theft. Following a jury trial, Panus was convicted of burglary and sentenced to a term of imprisonment of not less than 5 nor more than 15 years. Defendant appeals from that conviction and raises four issues:

(1). Whether the trial court erred by limiting the cross-examination of prosecution witness Ronald Herring with regard to his involvement in other offenses;

(2). Whether the trial court erred in allowing into evidence a certain roto-tiller which allegedly was the fruit of the burglary without proper proof of its ownership or relevancy;

(3). Whether the State failed to prove defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; and

(4). Whether the trial court erred in instructing the jury on the issue of circumstantial evidence by giving Illinois Pattern Jury Instruction, Criminal, No. 3.02 (hereinafter IPI Criminal).

Briefly stated the facts of this case involved an alleged burglary which occurred between October 1, 1974, and April 13, 1975, at the residence of Ronald Garmer and in which a Sears roto tiller was reportedly taken.

The State called as witnesses Ronald Herring, Ronald Garmer the alleged burglary victim, Detective Michael McCoy, Deputy Sheriff Robert Cone and Robert Choate, Sr.

Ronald Herring testified regarding certain conversations that he had with the defendant and the defendant's son, which testimony was to the effect that the defendant admitted to Herring that he had committed the burglary, that the defendant's son told Herring that he and the defendant had committed the crime, and that the defendant's son had related that he had committed the crime alone.

Ronald Garmer testified regarding the finding of the roto tiller missing from the shed wherein it had been stored, but was unable to pinpoint the date. Ronald Garmer further testified to his ownership of the roto tiller by way of visual identification, but after refusal by the court to admit the roto tiller, he was recalled to further identify the roto tiller by means of documents containing serial numbers. This latter testimony was refuted when cross-examination established that the handwritten serial numbers on the documents were not on the documents when received or purchased, were not written on the documents by Ronald Garmer, were not on the documents when they were turned over to Detective McCoy, but were on the documents after being in Detective McCoy's possession.

Detective McCoy testified to receiving the roto tiller from Robert Choate, Sr., and to having taken statements from Ronald Herring.

Deputy Sheriff Robert Cone testified to being involved in the receiving of the roto tiller from Robert Choate, Sr.

Robert Choate, Sr., testified that during the month of February 1975, he purchased a roto tiller from the defendant for $50, which roto tiller was taken from his residence by Detective McCoy.

The only witness called by the defendant was Detective Charles Jones who testified to having taken statements from Ronald Herring and that during these statements, Herring did not mention the conversation that he had had with the defendant, ...


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