APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Lake County; the Hon. JOHN L.
HUGHES, Judge, presiding.
MR. JUSTICE NASH DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:
Defendant Ruth M. Cohn entered a plea of guilty to the offense of conspiracy to commit murder and was sentenced to a term of six years' imprisonment. She appeals from the denial by the trial court of her motion to withdraw that plea, contending (1) that she was not admonished of her right to trial by jury; (2) that she was insufficiently advised of the nature of the charges against her; (3) that she pleaded guilty in reliance on a promise by the trial judge or a misrepresentation by her attorney that she would not receive a sentence of imprisonment; and (4) that the above deficiencies, in combination with the further failure of the trial court to determine defendant's fitness to plead, rendered the plea involuntary.
A two-count indictment charged defendant with solicitation to commit murder and conspiracy to commit murder. On May 14, 1980, defendant and her counsel appeared before the trial court and tendered a plea of guilty to the conspiracy count. The assistant State's Attorney stated to the court that in exchange for the guilty plea the State would nolle prosse the charge of solicitation to commit murder and would defer to the court (not make any recommendation) as to the sentence to be imposed on defendant. The court questioned defendant as follows:
"COURT: Mrs. Cohn, do you understand what we are doing here now?
COURT: Do you understand what counsel has said? He has indicated that you wish to enter a plea of guilty to the charge of conspiracy to commit murder.
DEFENDANT: Even though I have no recollection of committing anything I at this time agree to plead guilty to one charge.
COURT: You understand what the nature of this charge is that you wish to plead guilty to?
Thereafter the trial judge continued to generally admonish defendant as is required by Supreme court Rule 402 (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1977, ch. 110A, par. 402), and with regard to defendant's right to a trial stated:
"COURT: You have the right, you know, to plead not guilty, to maintain your plea of not guilty to the charge and to require the State to prove the charge against you, do you understand that?
COURT: Do you understand that you have the right to face your accuser and any witnesses against you, have them cross-examined by ...