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People v. Barrios

OPINION FILED SEPTEMBER 17, 1986.

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, APPELLEE,

v.

VINCENT H. BARRIOS, APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Appellate Court for the Second District; heard in that court on appeal from the Circuit Court of Carroll County, the Hon. John W. Rapp, Jr., Judge, presiding.

JUSTICE WARD DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Rehearing denied December 1, 1986.

Following a jury trial in the circuit court of Carroll County, the defendant, Vincent H. Barrios, was convicted of falsely stating on a driver's license application that his license or privilege to drive was not revoked, and of driving with a revoked license. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 38, par. 32-2; Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 95 1/2, par. 6-303.) He was sentenced to concurrent terms of four years on the perjury conviction and 364 days for driving on a revoked license. The appellate court affirmed (136 Ill. App.3d 197), and we granted the defendant's petition for leave to appeal under our Rule 315 (103 Ill.2d R. 315).

The evidence shows that on April 23, 1984, Deputy Sheriff Dave Dyson observed the defendant, with whom he was acquainted, driving an auto, while in the company of Barbara Kellam. Believing that the defendant's license had been revoked, Dyson by car radio requested a license check on Vincent H. Barrios, with a birthdate of September 30, 1937. (The birthdate was on file at the sheriff's office.) When the check showed that the Secretary of State had revoked the license, Dyson stopped the defendant. He produced an Illinois driver's license issued March 13, 1984, and Dyson then ran another license check using the file number stamped on the license the defendant exhibited. The check showed that license to be valid. Informing the defendant of the discrepancy, Dyson ordered him to proceed to the sheriff's office. The license the defendant produced, issued on March 13, 1984, showed September 30, 1941, as the defendant's birthdate.

At the sheriff's office, the defendant, who had been accompanied by Kellam, showed papers pertaining to driving privileges in Iowa. As they did not concern driving privileges in Illinois, Dyson rechecked the status of the defendant's driving privileges with the Secretary of State under the 1937 and the 1941 birthdates. That showed that the defendant had both a revoked and a valid license under the respective birthdates. The defendant was at that time charged only with the offense of driving with a revoked license in violation of section 6-303 of the Illinois Vehicle Code (Code) (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 95 1/2, par. 6-303).

When Dyson requested abstracts of the defendant's driver's licenses, the Secretary of State forwarded a certificate which stated that "an O[r]der of Revocation, was entered against the driving privileges of Vincent H. Barrios, DOB: September 30, 1937, * * * on May 14, 1980, and said Revocation is in effect as of this date," that is, June 25, 1984. Accompanying the certificate was a copy of the order of revocation resulting from the defendant's conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol, and an order of extension stating that the May 14, 1980, revocation had been extended to May 20, 1982, due to the defendant's conviction for driving while his license was revoked. The defendant admits his license was never reinstated under the provision of section 6-208(b) of the Code (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 95 1/2, par. 6-208(b)).

On April 30, 1984, a criminal information was filed against the defendant charging the offense of perjury (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 38, par. 32-2) for knowingly and falsely responding "No" to the following question on his March 13, 1984, driver's license application:

"Is your drivers [sic] license or privilege to obtain a license suspended, revoked, cancelled or refused in this or any state? (If answer is `yes', give date, reason, state, etc. below.)"

The record shows that Wanda Stewart, service clerk at the Chadwick Driver's Facility (the facility), testified that on March 9, 1984, the defendant applied for a driver's license. For identification, the defendant produced an Iowa driver's license bearing a birthdate of September 30, 1941, and an Iowa Department of Transportation form. Being unfamiliar with the Iowa form, Stewart consulted her supervisor, Doug Queckboerner, to insure that the defendant "was cleared in Iowa." After doing so, Stewart asked the defendant whether his name and birthdate as shown on the Iowa license were correct; the defendant responded "Yes." Stewart entered the information on the application. Stewart then proceeded to process the application, beginning with asking the defendant whether his license or privilege to obtain a license was suspended or revoked. The defendant replied "No." The application, however, could not be completed until the defendant had a physician complete a State medical form because he had stated that he suffered from epilepsy. On March 13, the defendant returned to the facility with the medical form completed. After answering the remaining questions, the defendant signed the application at Stewart's request, affirming the correctness of the information he had provided. The defendant signed the application directly under the portion of the application which read:

"I HEREBY AFFIRM THAT THE INFORMATION I HAVE FURNISHED IN THIS APPLICATION FOR LICENSE IS TRUE TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE AND BELIEF."

The State, as evidence of the defendant's knowledge that his license and privilege to obtain a license were revoked, introduced a transcript from a November 1983 proceeding in Illinois in which the defendant was charged with driving on a revoked license. The judge read the following portion of the transcript to the jury, overruling the defendant's objections that the transcript was "highly prejudicial [and] * * * not necessarily probative," and improperly introduced into evidence his commission of prior crimes.

"THE COURT: You are charged on March of `82 with driving while your license was revoked and no valid registration * * *. Do you have a driver's license in Illinois at this time?

MR. BARRIOS: No, I have a — I don't — I have an Illinois driver's license.

THE COURT: Do you know your privilege to drive in the State of ...


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