APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, FIRST DISTRICT, FIFTH DIVISION
J.W., a Minor, Respondent-Appellant)
518 N.E.2d 310, 164 Ill. App. 3d 826, 115 Ill. Dec. 785 1987.IL.1838
Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. Claude Whitaker, Judge, presiding.
JUSTICE LORENZ delivered the opinion of the court. SULLIVAN, P.J., and MURRAY, J., concur.
DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE LORENZ
The minor respondent, J.W., was found delinquent based on having committed an armed robbery. He was then adjudicated a habitual offender pursuant to section 5-12 of the Juvenile Court Act (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 37, par. 705-12) and was committed to the Department of Corrections, Juvenile Division, until his 21st birthday.
On appeal J.W. contends that his adjudication as a habitual juvenile offender must be vacated because one of two prior findings of delinquency, which formed the basis of this adjudication, was made without respondent's being properly advised of his constitutional rights before he admitted to that offense.
In a jury trial the State presented testimony establishing that respondent was one of four males who, on December 6, 1983, committed an armed robbery at a Chicago grocery store. The jury found respondent delinquent based on this armed robbery and respondent does not challenge this finding. A hearing on May 3, 1985, was then held to determine whether respondent could be adjudicated a habitual offender pursuant to section 5-12 of the Juvenile Court Act. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 37, par. 705-12.) A prerequisite for such a finding is a showing that a minor who had been adjudicated a delinquent has previously been twice adjudicated a delinquent minor for offenses which would have been felonies had the minor been prosecuted as an adult.
To establish the requisite prior adjudications, the State presented certified copies of two prior findings of delinquency. Both of those findings were based on in-court admissions made by the respondent. Such admissions are the functional equivalent of guilt pleas in adult criminal proceedings. (In re Haggins (1977), 67 Ill. 2d 102, 364 N.E.2d 54.) In accepting such an admission by a minor, a trial Judge must determine that due process requirements are met. The court must ascertain that the minor understands his right against self-incrimination, his right to confront his accusers, and his right to trial. The minor must also understand that he waives these rights by his admission and thereby confers on the court the authority to treat him in a manner authorized by the Juvenile Court Act. In re Beasley (1977), 66 Ill. 2d 385, 362 N.E.2d 1024.
The first finding of delinquency relied on by the State occurred on December 8, 1981, when the respondent was 12 years old. The transcript of that proceeding establishes that respondent was represented by counsel and that the court advised him of his rights in compliance with Beasley.
However, the transcript of the second hearing, held April 25, 1983, at which the second adjudication relied on by the State was made, establishes that at that proceeding respondent was not fully advised of his rights. After respondent's counsel advised the court that the respondent would be ...