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05/05/87 the People of the State of v. Michael Adams

May 5, 1987

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE

v.

MICHAEL ADAMS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT



APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, FIRST DISTRICT, SECOND DIVISION

509 N.E.2d 482, 156 Ill. App. 3d 444, 108 Ill. Dec. 786 1987.IL.585

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. Kenneth Gillis, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

JUSTICE BILANDIC delivered the opinion of the court. SCARIANO, P.J., and HARTMAN, J., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE BILANDIC

Defendant appeals his convictions of two counts of armed robbery (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 38, par. 18-2(a)), one count of armed violence based on possession of a stolen motor vehicle (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 38, par. 33A-2; ch. 95 1/2, par. 4-103(a)), possession of a stolen motor vehicle (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 95 1/2, par. 4-103a(1)), and theft (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1983, ch. 38, par. 16-1(a)(1)). Defendant also appeals his sentences for concurrent terms of imprisonment for 20 years on the two counts of armed robbery, 10 years for armed violence, and 5 years for theft. *fn1

Defendant Michael Adams and seven other co-defendants were indicted for several offenses. Adams' case was severed and a jury convicted him of the enumerated offenses.

On appeal, defendant contends that: (1) his case must be remanded for a hearing on whether the State improperly used peremptory challenges to exclude blacks from the jury; (2) he was not proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; (3) he was denied a fair trial; (4) the armed violence conviction was improperly predicated upon the offense of possession of a stolen motor vehicle; (5) he was improperly sentenced; and (6) the court erred in appointing assistant public defenders to represent him on his post-trial motions because a conflict of interest existed.

The evidence showed that on January 26, 1985, at about 7 p.m., Ernestine Roseman (Roseman), age 57, and Cyrus Wooldridge (Wooldridge), age 73, returned to Wooldridge's home after grocery shopping. Roseman was driving Wooldridge's 1978 Buick. They parked, locked the car, and activated the burglar alarm. While they were crossing the street, they saw a group of five to seven youths walk towards them. The group encircled them; one pointed a shotgun at them and announced: "[This] is a stickup. Stand still, if you don't I'll kill you. Give us your money." Roseman saw three handguns and Wooldridge saw one handgun. One of the youths took approximately $65 from Wooldridge's pocket. Roseman's ring, purse containing about $30, and the keys to Wooldridge's car were also taken. The group got into Wooldridge's car and drove away.

The victims immediately phoned the police and gave a description of the car. Wooldridge's car was found parked in a lot within 45 minutes and was kept under surveillance. About an hour later, a group of youths got into the car and drove away. The police followed the car, saw it pull over, and observed a female and a child leave the car and walk across the street. Two officers pulled the car over and saw the driver turn and drop a handgun into the back seat of the car as they approached. The officers identified Adams as the driver. After the youths were arrested, a gun and Roseman's cosmetics were recovered from the back seat of the car.

Roseman identified the gun recovered from the car as being similar to one used in the robbery. A shotgun was recovered from another codefendant.

Roseman and Wooldridge viewed separate lineups later that evening at the police station. Wooldridge identified Adams as resembling one of his assailants. Roseman identified Adams and another suspect from the lineup as resembling two of her assailants.

Marcus Skipper, 14 years old, knew the defendant for about four years. He testified that on January 26, 1985, at about 6 p.m., Adams and the co-defendants were at his house when one said, "Let's go make some money." The group, including the defendant, left Skipper's house and walked through a field. Skipper testified that one defendant had a shotgun and another had a handgun. The group saw Roseman and Wooldridge, and another defendant announced the stick-up. Skipper testified that he and another youth stood across the street and observed the robbery. He saw one defendant give the car keys to Adams and saw Adams driving the car away from the scene. Shortly thereafter, Skipper saw the group of defendants, including Adams, and was shown the money they had taken from Wooldridge and Roseman.

Defendant's only witness at the trial was Adams' girlfriend, who testified that she was with Adams that evening. Adams now ...


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