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People v. Patton

OPINION FILED NOVEMBER 10, 1980.

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

v.

GLENN PATTON, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Peoria County; the Hon. CALVIN R. STONE, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE SCOTT DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

This is an appeal from an order of the Circuit Court of Peoria County denying defense motions to quash arrest and suppress evidence.

The defendant, Glenn Patton, had been indicted for the murder and attempted robbery of Gregory Sargent. His motions to quash arrest and suppress evidence were denied and he was convicted after a jury trial. He was sentenced to a term of 35 years for murder and 10 years for attempt (armed robbery).

On June 4, 1979, at 11:30 p.m., William Lininger, a tenant at the Greenbrier Apartments in Peoria, Illinois, went to his mailbox for his mail. Since it was a nice evening, Lininger went outside where he saw a Negro male in the parking lot who he thought was a fellow tenant, Gregory Sargent. When he approached this individual, Lininger realized that he did not know him. The witness Lininger saw him enter the apartment building and shortly thereafter observed two black men leave the building who walked around the area and then reentered the building. The witness Lininger next heard a loud noise and saw two black men run out of and away from the building. When he entered the building Lininger found Gregory Sargent lying in the hallway and bleeding.

After the police arrived Lininger was asked to look at the cars in the parking lot and point out any which did not belong there. He pointed out a brown Camaro which he had seen pull into the lot earlier. He had not seen the occupants.

The Camaro belonged to Mary Jamison, who was interviewed at her apartment on June 9, 1979. Jamison had loaned her car to her boyfriend, Gary Willingham, on June 4. He left at 10 p.m. and returned during the early morning hours of June 5. Jamison had found a nylon stocking in the car and had put it in the trunk. Before he died Sargent said he had been attacked by two men wearing nylon stockings on their heads. Jamison also said she had seen Willingham with a gun.

Jamison was taken to the police station for questioning. Willingham was found and brought in for questioning. He was arrested at noon on June 9, 1979, and after being advised of his constitutional rights, denied being at the Greenbrier Apartments on June 4. When told that the Camaro had been there, Willingham said he went there to see "Jim." When told that there was no "Jim," he then admitted being at the apartment when Sargent was shot. He heard a bump and a shot and saw Sargent bleeding in the hallway. He left the apartment and ran to Tracy Lorenz' house, where he told Betty Balestri what had happened. When interviewed, Betty Balestri said that after Willingham told her Sargent had been shot he told defendant and Tracy Lorenz. Defendant was taken to the police station for questioning on June 9. He denied involvement and was released. At 8 p.m. on June 10 the defendant was arrested because he didn't want to go to the police station for further questioning and that he had told a story that was in conflict with information related by Balestri. There is some disagreement between the State and counsel for defendant as to whether the arrest was for the offense of murder or for the offense of obstructing justice.

At 9 p.m. on June 10, Willingham was again questioned. He stated that he went to Sargent's apartment with Thomas and the defendant to rob Sargent of some cocaine and that Thomas had a gun. There was a scuffle and Sargent was shot.

Defendant at approximately 11:10 p.m. on June 10 was formally told he was under arrest for murder, after which he was searched and advised of his constitutional rights and kept in an interview room. An oral statement was taken approximately 20 minutes later and a written statement was taken at 1:50 a.m. During questioning the defendant said that he wanted the prosecutor to know that he was cooperating. An assistant State's Attorney talked to him and told him that he knew defendant was cooperating but he made no deals. The defendant was not promised anything or threatened and he never asked for an attorney.

Defendant was indicted for murder, attempt (armed robbery), attempt (robbery). He moved to quash his arrest, suppress evidence and suppress his statements. The court denied all of these motions. The trial court found that there was probable cause for the arrest and that the confession was given voluntarily after defendant was fully advised of his constitutional rights. At the trial and during rebuttal argument the prosecutor told the jury that they need not consider all the circumstances regarding the taking of the confession and there was no objection to this statement by defendant. He did raise the issue in his post-trial motion but the same was not argued. Defendant was found guilty of all charges and was sentenced to 35 years of imprisonment for murder and 10 years of imprisonment for attempt (armed robbery). No judgment was entered for attempt (robbery).

A further recitation of facts will be set forth as they become pertinent to the resolution of the issues which the defendant has raised in this appeal.

On appeal the defendant argues that the trial court erred by denying his motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence, by failing to make an express finding of the facts relative to probable cause, by denying his motion to suppress confession, and by allowing the prosecutor to tell the jury that they need not consider all the circumstances in regard to the taking of his confession.

First, defendant argues that the trial court erred in denying his motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence. He insists that he was arrested twice, first on June 9 and again on June 10, 1979, that both arrests were without probable cause, and that his confessions were the result of those illegal arrests.

• 1 We agree that the defendant was arrested on June 10, 1979, but we disagree with his contention that he was arrested on June 9. On this latter date the record clearly discloses that the defendant and his girlfriend, Karyn Shay, voluntarily accompanied two police officers to the police station and that after he made a statement both he and his girlfriend were permitted to leave the station. Where a defendant is simply asked to accompany officers without threats or show of force there is no ...


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