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In Re R.l.k.

OPINION FILED DECEMBER 29, 1978.

IN RE R.L.K., A MINOR. — (THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

R.L.K., DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.) — IN RE L.A.C., A MINOR. — (THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

L.A.C., DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.)



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Brown County; the Hon. DAVID K. SLOCUM, Judge, presiding. MR. JUSTICE MILLS DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Are the concepts of double jeopardy and compulsory joinder to be applied to MINS proceedings (minor in need of supervision)?

The short answer: Yes.

The State filed MINS petitions requesting that the respondents, L.A.C. and R.L.K., be adjudged minors in need of supervision and made wards of the court because of their involvement in an alleged theft. At the hearing on the petitions the State called to the witness stand Chief of Police Larry Bowen who testified that both minors had made statements to police admitting their involvement in the theft of a candy machine.

The People then rested their case and the minors' guardian ad litem moved for a directed verdict on the grounds that the State had not established that the respondents were minors in need of supervision. This motion was granted by the trial judge who stated that he did not believe the State had proved by a preponderance of the evidence that the minors were out of the control of their parents. The court further stated that it realized the State's Attorney had petitioned to have these respondents declared minors in need of supervision because he was looking for a lesser solution than having them declared delinquent and stated that this policy was "commendable." The trial court found, nevertheless, that a directed verdict was appropriate.

The State did not appeal this order but, instead, filed petitions for adjudication of wardship against both respondents, alleging that they were delinquent. The petitions charged that the minors had violated the curfew statutes, committed criminal damage to property, and had been involved in a theft. (These charges arose out of the same conduct that was charged in the first petition.) At the hearing on the petition, Chief Bowen was again called by the State to the witness stand and it was stipulated that his testimony would be the same as at the previous hearing on the petition to have respondents adjudged minors in need of supervision and made wards of the court. The State then rested.

The minor respondents then made an oral motion to dismiss on the grounds that the petitions did not state the offenses with the particularity required by section 111-3 of the Criminal Code of 1961 (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 38, par. 111-3). Specifically, they argued that the petitions did not state the date of any of the three offenses, that the criminal damage and theft allegations did not state the names of the respondents, and that the criminal damage allegation did not specify the subsection of the statute said to have been violated. As an alternative ground for dismissal, respondents argued that the proceedings on the delinquency petition were barred by double jeopardy. It was argued that the theft allegations were barred by section 3-4 of the Criminal Code because the prior adjudicatory proceeding was a former prosecution for theft, and that the curfew and criminal damage allegations were barred by section 3-3 of the Criminal Code because these offenses were known to the prosecution at the time of the prior proceeding and therefore were subject to the compulsory joinder rules of the Criminal Code. Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 38, pars. 3-3, 3-4.

The trial court granted respondents' motion on double jeopardy and compulsory joinder grounds, although in his written order the trial court also stated (as an alternative ground) that the charge was not sufficiently specific. The State attacks all three grounds on appeal but, in light of our decision on the compulsory joinder and double jeopardy issues, we need not discuss arguments dealing with the sufficiency of the charge.

• 1 Before the merits of this appeal can be examined, there is a threshold jurisdictional question: Namely, whether the State has a right to appeal the trial court's order dismissing the delinquency petition. We say yes.

Supreme Court Rule 660(a) provides that "[a]ppeals from final judgments in delinquent minor proceedings, except as otherwise specifically provided, shall be governed by the rules applicable to criminal cases." (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 110A, par. 660(a).) In criminal cases, Supreme Court Rule 604(a) states that the State may appeal from an order dismissing a charge for any of the grounds enumerated in section 114-1 of the Criminal Code. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 110A, par. 604(a); Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 38, par. 114-1.) In the instant case, the dismissal was ordered because the trial court was of the opinion that the delinquency proceeding was brought in violation of sections 3-3 and 3-4 of the Criminal Code. These are grounds which are enumerated in section 114-1 of the Code. Thus, the instant case is clearly appealable. See People v. Hill (1971), 133 Ill. App.2d 147, 272 N.E.2d 840.

Proceeding to the substantive aspects of the case, we are immediately confronted with questions concerning the relevancy and application of compulsory joinder and double jeopardy principles.

The double jeopardy clause of the fifth amendment to the Constitution of the United States provides:

"* * * nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb." U.S. Const., amend. V.

Section 3-4(b)(1) of the Illinois Criminal Code deals with double jeopardy and states (in part):

"A prosecution is barred if the defendant was formerly prosecuted for a different offense, or for the same offense based upon ...


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