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People v. Patterson

OPINION FILED DECEMBER 12, 1980.

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

v.

CHESTER PATTERSON, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Will County; the Hon. ANGELO F. PISTILLI, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE BARRY DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

The defendant Chester Patterson was charged by indictment in the Circuit Court of Will County with the offense of rape. Following a jury trial, he was convicted of rape and sentenced to a 15-year determinate prison term.

Defendant has presented eight issues for review:

1. Whether the defendant was proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt?

2. Whether in denying the defendant's requests for a directed verdict, the trial judge misapplied the law concerning the standard of proof in rape cases?

3. Whether the defendant was deprived of a fair trial by the trial judge improperly restricting the testimony of a defense witness who was present at the lineup where the complainant expressed doubt as to her ability to identify the defendant?

4. Whether the trial judge erred in denying the defendant's motion to strike the in-court identification because the identification was based upon suggestive police procedures and was unreliable?

5. Whether the trial judge erred in denying a mistrial motion after the prosecutor referred to the defendant as `Chester the Molester' on a courthouse elevator in the presence of a juror in the case?

6. Whether the trial judge deprived the defendant of a fair trial by informing the jury that the case involved a `black on white rape'?

7. Whether the court erred in failing to admonish the jury that the prior inconsistent statement of a hostile witness was to be used only in judging his credibility and not as substantive evidence?

8. Whether the trial judge abused his discretion in sentencing the defendant, a youthful first offender with a good background, to a 15-year determinate sentence.

The defendant Patterson allegedly raped Susan Dome on January 3, 1978. The victim testified that she was abducted at gunpoint as she walked through the parking lot at Joliet East High School. She reported that she had arrived at the parking lot for her 11:15 a.m. class but did not recall seeing the security guard who was normally on duty. Walking through the parking lot she noticed a black male whom she did not know sitting in a car. As she walked by the car, which she later described as a red Ford Galaxy 500 XL, the black male spoke to her but she ignored his comment and continued to walk toward the school. Susan Dome then testified that this same person came up from behind her, grabbed her arm and turned her around. He had a pistol and ordered her to walk to his car. Her assailant was wearing a red and gold jacket with an Indian head emblem on one side and the letter "M" on the other.

The complainant testified that when they reached the car the assailant pushed her in on the driver's side. The complainant was made to sit on a console between the front bucket seats of the car.

The car left the parking lot and after a drive of about 10 minutes arrived at a location on Rowell Avenue in Will County. The complainant was told to remove her clothes and lie down so that she was facing toward the front of the car with her head resting on the back seat. The assailant then drove around for 30 or 40 minutes.

Ms. Dome's testimony indicated that the assailant kept the handgun between his legs during the entire time he was driving. She also stated that he drove with one hand most of the time.

The complainant said she was familiar with the area and could tell where she was even though she was lying down. The car eventually stopped at approximately the same location where she had earlier been told to disrobe. At this point the complainant was allegedly raped. She testified that she offered no resistance. She stated that she did not think that the assailant ...


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