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People v. Zamp





APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. FRANK W. BARBARO, Judge, presiding.


The defendant, Jerome Zamp, was charged by indictment with murder (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1975, ch. 38, par. 9-1), and tried by a jury in the circuit court of Cook County. A guilty verdict was returned and defendant was sentenced to a term of 200 to 300 years' imprisonment. He appeals his conviction, and we affirm.

Defendant contends on appeal that (1) he was not proved guilty of murder beyond a reasonable doubt because the confession conflicted with the testimony of the witnesses, and (2) the court erred in denying the motion to suppress the written confession.

Prior to trial, defendant filed a motion to suppress certain statements he made to the police after his arrest. A pretrial hearing was held on his motion to suppress. At the hearing, two New Orleans, Louisiana, police officers, John Graham and Charles Miller, testified for the State. On May 14, 1977, Officer Miller had a telephone conversation with Chicago police officer Strahlman who requested assistance in arresting defendant for a murder charge pending in Chicago. Miller was informed that an arrest warrant had been issued for defendant, and he was given information as to where defendant might be found. Later that day, Officers Graham, Miller, and Strada arrested defendant at the Society Page bar in New Orleans.

Officer Graham further testified that he identified himself as a New Orleans police officer and informed defendant he was being placed under arrest as a fugitive from Chicago. He stated that another officer advised defendant of his rights. Officers Graham and Miller both testified that defendant's condition appeared normal and there was no difficulty communicating with him. Officer Graham stated he did not believe defendant was intoxicated at the time of the arrest.

During the ride to the police station, defendant questioned Graham about the charge, but Graham did not respond. When they arrived at the police station, defendant was taken to an office where he was advised of his rights by Graham. Officer Graham testified that defendant acknowledged understanding his rights and then signed a waiver form. Officers Graham, Miller, and Strada were present when the form was executed by defendant, and defendant did not make any request for or mention that he had an attorney.

Officer Graham also testified that he later had a conversation with defendant for approximately 45 minutes. Defendant asked Graham to take some money to Laura Cambisi. Graham took the money to Ms. Cambisi the following day.

For approximately 2 1/2 hours, Officers Graham and Miller had another conversation with defendant. During this time, defendant made and signed a written statement concerning the charge. Both officers testified that from the time defendant was arrested until the time he concluded his written statement no New Orleans police officer attempted to coerce defendant by physically assaulting him or making any promises to him.

Officers Graham and Miller were both present on May 17, 1977, when two Chicago police officers had a conversation with defendant. Officer Graham testified that when he saw defendant on the 17th there were no marks or bruises on his face or forehead nor any swelling near his ears.

Officer Markham of the Chicago Police Department stated that he read defendant his rights from a printed card, and defendant acknowledged he understood the rights and wished to answer their questions. Defendant did not tell the officers he wanted an attorney present nor did he mention that he was represented locally by Richard Stricks.

Officer Markham and Strahlman, the two Chicago police officers, talked with defendant for approximately 30 minutes. They told defendant of an oral statement given by Joseph Beto, stating that Beto was the driver and defendant was the gunman in the incident involving Dr. Wachtel. Both officers testified that no one struck or coerced the defendant during the conversation.

Defendant testified in his own behalf on his motion to suppress. He stated he was arrested at the Society Page bar in New Orleans on May 14, 1977. He had been in the bar some 6 or more hours that day. The night before, he drank 1 to 1 1/2 quarts of Wild Turkey liquor and had taken 30 preludins. He stated he had not slept for 3 or 4 days prior thereto, due to taking preludins and drinking. He testified that he was somewhat intoxicated and not very aware of what was going on when he was arrested. Defendant stated he was never advised of his rights while at the Society Page bar, and after leaving the bar one of the officers punched him in the "solar plexus."

Defendant stated he felt intoxicated when he was taken to an interview room at the police station, and the officers had not informed him of the charge against him. He was shown and read a written statement allegedly made by Joseph Beto accusing him of being an accomplice to a murder. He further stated that the police wanted him to sign a statement similar to that of Beto's but he refused to do so. One of the officers hit him in the face. He stated that no rights were read to him and he asked for an attorney but was not allowed to make a telephone call. He further stated he was hit in the face several times before losing consciousness.

According to defendant, when he regained consciousness he had a private conversation with Officer Graham who asked whether he wished to make a statement. Defendant said he would sign anything if Graham would deliver some money to his girlfriend. He stated Graham wanted $50 and the defendant gave him the money. The defendant later spoke to his girlfriend, Laura Cambisi, and told her to telephone attorney Stricks. After he spoke with her, he was again asked to sign a statement, which he refused to do, and the officers hit him another four to six times on the head with a blackjack. ...

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