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In Re R.s.





Appeal from the Circuit Court of La Salle County; the Hon. Fred P. Wagner, Judge, presiding.


A petition for adjudication of wardship was filed on August 2, 1982, which named the minor, R.S., and the minor's parents as respondents. The minor's address was the same as his father's, but his mother resided at a different address. The petition alleged that the minor was delinquent because he committed the offense of burglary. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1981, ch. 38, par. 19-1(a).) No summons or service on any of the respondents appears in the record.

R.S. was taken into custody pursuant to a youth warrant. He was placed in the temporary custody of the La Salle County Probation Department from August 6, 1982, until August 18, 1982.

On August 11, 1982, the minor, his attorney, and the minor's father were present in court when an order of continuance was entered. The adjudicatory hearing was then set for August 18, 1982.

The minor, his father, and the minor's attorney were present in court on August 18, 1982. Once again the cause was continued. The court also ordered that the minor reside with his father rather than at the detention home until the hearing set for August 24, 1982. The record does not indicate what occurred during the August 24, 1982, hearing or whether it took place.

The minor consented to an adjudication of delinquency on August 31, 1982. His father and counsel were present at the hearing. However, the minor subsequently made a motion to withdraw his consent. The motion was allowed on September 15, 1982, and the trial court vacated its order of adjudication and finding of contempt. The minor's father and attorney were present at the proceeding. September 22, 1982, was the date set for the adjudicatory hearing.

The adjudicatory hearing commenced as scheduled, although there is some confusion as to whether the hearing began on September 22 or 23, 1982. The common law record states September 22, 1982, as the date, while the report of proceedings states September 23, 1982. We will refer to the hearing as the September 22, 1982, hearing. The minor's father was not present on the first day of the adjudicatory hearing, although the minor and his attorney were there.

The hearing was continued until October 12, 1982, at which time the father was present in court with his son. Further proceedings were continued until October 13, 1982. The hearing was in progress on October 13, 1982, when the minor's father arrived. The hearing was then continued until October 21, 1982.

On October 21, 1982, the minor was adjudicated a delinquent. He was present in court and represented by his attorney, but his father was not present. The record indicates that the minor's father was injured in an automobile accident sometime between October 13 and 21, 1982. The father was hospitalized and unable to attend the hearing. The minor's aunt and uncle were present. They had custody of R.S. since the father's accident and had requested permission to attend the hearings, which the court granted.

A dispositional hearing was held on November 9, 1982. The minor and his attorney were present. Since the minor's father was still hospitalized, the minor's aunt and uncle attended the hearing. R.S. was committed to the Department of Corrections.

The State's evidence tended to establish that on July 25, 1982, at about 3 a.m., Larry's Universal Plumbing and Heating, located in Ottawa, Illinois, was burglarized. One of the owners of the business, James Hicks, testified for the State. He was in the building at the time of the break-in. Hicks identified R.S. as one of the people involved in the burglary. He said later in his testimony that he was "pretty sure" it was R.S. and that he could have picked R.S. out of a lineup if there had been one.

Billy Joe Joyce testified on behalf of the State. He admitted taking part in the burglary although he said he only acted as a look-out. Joyce implicated R.S. and Keith Lambert in the incident.

Joyce testified that before he made the statement to the State's Attorney's office which implicated R.S. and Lambert, he was granted total immunity from prosecution on the instant offense. Another unrelated theft charge was reduced to criminal damage to property as well. Joyce admitted that he had prior convictions as a juvenile.

Following testimony from other witnesses, the State rested. At this time the trial judge called Keith Lambert as a court witness. Lambert was not listed as a State witness in discovery. The judge commented that he thought it unusual that Lambert had not been called to testify since Lambert had ...

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