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People v. Clark

OPINION FILED NOVEMBER 26, 1984.

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

v.

CALVIN CLARK ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLANTS.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. Thomas J. Maloney, Judge, presiding.

JUSTICE MCGLOON DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Rehearing denied January 17, 1985.

After a jury trial, judgment was entered on defendants' convictions of attempted murder and murder. Defendant Kent Clark was sentenced to concurrent terms of imprisonment of 40 years for murder and 20 years for attempted murder. Calvin Clark and Dwayne Moorehead were each sentenced to concurrent terms of 35 years for murder and 20 years for attempted murder. On appeal, defendants contend: (1) They were denied their right to present a defense and confront witnesses, and (2) they were not proved guilty of murder beyond a reasonable doubt.

We affirm.

Sharvis Pipes, Bobby Pipes and Leroy Morffett suffered gunshot wounds during a shooting incident which occurred at about 7 p.m. on March 23, 1982, in the 1500 block of South Drake in Chicago. Leroy Morffett died in April 1982. In addition to the charges of attempted murder and aggravated battery arising from the shooting of Sharvis and Bobby Pipes, defendants were also charged with the murder of Leroy Morffett.

At trial, Geneva Morffett, wife of the deceased, testified that as she and her husband stepped onto the porch of their home, she saw a large crowd standing nearby and heard several gunshots. A bullet grazed her left arm, and her husband was shot in the abdomen. Mr. Morffett was hospitalized because of his injury and was released from the hospital on April 9, 1982. Mrs. Morffett did not see the gunman.

Brian Ashford and Terrence Harris testified they were playing basketball in the alley behind the 1500 block of South Drake when four men walked past them. Ashford recognized all three defendants, and Harris recognized Kent Clark. The four men stopped where Thomas Harris and Kewane Smith were playing basketball. Ashford testified that Kent Clark placed a gun to Thomas Harris' head. Ashford and Harris saw the four men run into a gangway toward Drake Street. Both witnesses testified they heard gunfire shortly thereafter and ran home.

Thomas Harris testified that on the evening in question, he was playing basketball in the alley with Kewane Smith. Kent and Calvin Clark and two other men ran towards them. Kent Clark aimed a gun at Harris and told him he would shoot if Harris moved. Kent Clark then followed the other three men through a gangway. As Harris ran home, he heard about ten gunshots.

David LeFlore testified that prior to the incident he was standing in front of 1510 South Drake with Sharvis and Bobby Pipes and about 15 other people. Defendants and a fourth person appeared from a gangway and began firing gunshots into the crowd. Each defendant carried a gun. Bobby Pipes was injured and taken to the hospital.

Sharvis Pipes testified a crowd had gathered to watch a fight among several girls. Calvin Clark, Dwayne Moorehead and another person ran from the gangway. Clark and Moorehead were carrying guns. About 15 shots were fired, one of which struck Pipes in his leg. Police took Pipes to the hospital, where he identified Calvin Clark as one of the gunmen. Later at the police station, he identified Moorehead.

Bobby Pipes was also among those who had gathered on the street on the evening in question. He testified that at 7 p.m., Calvin and Kent Clark and two other people ran towards the crowd and began firing guns. Bobby Pipes was shot in his left arm and required surgery to remove the bullet.

Officer Henry Jackson testified he interviewed Sharvis Pipes at Mount Sinai Hospital. Pipes stated he was shot by defendant Calvin Clark. Officer John Kohles testified that after speaking to Sharvis Pipes and Officer Jackson at the hospital, he returned to the scene of the crime, spoke to Kent Clark, and took Kent Clark and two others to the hospital. Sharvis Pipes could not identify any of the three. Later that evening, Sharvis Pipes identified Calvin Clark and Dwayne Moorehead.

Dr. Robert Kirschner conducted a post-mortem examination on Leroy Morffett on April 18, 1982. His internal and external exams revealed that Morffett had suffered recent gunshot wounds to his abdomen, small intestine, colon and liver. The immediate cause of death was the presence of two blood clots in the pulmonary arteries. Kirschner explained that blood clots in the major blood vessels of the lungs completely prevent blood circulation in the lungs and cause immediate heart failure and death. Kirschner testified that the gunshot wound, surgery and prolonged convalescence caused the clots to form. They initially formed in the victim's left leg and traveled to his lungs.

Defendant Dwayne Moorehead testified he was at home between 5:30 and 8:35 p.m. on the evening in question. He denied involvement in the shooting incident. Defendant's mother Katherine Moorehead, his sisters Patricia and Jacqueline Moorehead, and ...


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