APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, SECOND DISTRICT
525 N.E.2d 182, 170 Ill. App. 3d 581, 121 Ill. Dec. 376 1988.IL.904
Appeal from the Circuit Court of Winnebago County; the Hon. John E. Sype, Judge, presiding.
JUSTICE REINHARD delivered the opinion of the court. LINDBERG, P.J., and UNVERZAGT, J., concur.
DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE REINHARD
On appeal, defendant contends that (1) the evidence failed to prove that his actions constituted an attempt to kill, (2) the State failed to prove its theory of transferred intent, (3) the evidence was insufficient to prove him guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of attempted murder, and (4) the trial court abused its sentencing discretion in imposing a 10-year term of imprisonment.
Defendant and a codefendant, David Krueger, were charged in an indictment with committing the offense of attempted murder of Dominic Iasparro on September 11, 1986. The co-defendants were tried separately. At defendant's trial, the State adduced evidence that, on the evening of September 11, 1986, defendant, Krueger, and Krueger's wife, Christine, were at Tom's Tap in Rockford at 9 p.m. during a lunch break on Christine's work shift at Amerock Corporation. Christine related that during their conversation, defendant stated that Bill Knight said something that day about burying him and his Cadillac with his two Budweiser cans. After leaving the tavern, defendant and Krueger dropped Christine off at work and drove off in her car.
Bill Knight, an attorney in Rockford, represented a client who was previously injured in an automobile accident with defendant. Defendant had been charged with leaving the scene of an accident involving personal injury or death. At the preliminary hearing on that charge, held on September 11, 1986, Knight attended and gave defendant and his attorney Knight's professional card and introduced himself. Knight testified that there was no other conversation and that he sat next to defendant for awhile during the hearing. Becky Knight, the former wife of attorney Knight, who worked as an investigator and photographer for attorney Knight, was also present at the preliminary hearing and sat next to defendant at some point. She tried to take defendant's photograph outside the courtroom, and defendant was pushed away by his father and friends to avoid being photographed. She had no conversation with defendant. Attorney Knight lives at 1205 Lundvall Avenue in Rockford.
Dominic Iasparro lives at 1311 Lundvall Avenue, which is about one block from attorney Knight's house. He is a police officer for the City of Rockford and was not acquainted personally or professionally with defendant or David Krueger. At approximately 10 p.m. on September 11, 1986, Iasparro was at home watching television in the front living room with his wife when he heard a car with loud mufflers pass his house two or three times. He thought the car slowed down the last time, and he went to the front door. He looked out a window in the top of the door and observed a car containing two males parked near the curb. The person on the passenger side, later identified by Iasparro as Krueger, left the car and walked up Iasparro's front lawn to his front porch. Iasparro turned on the porch light and opened the door. Krueger turned and ran back to the car, which was driven off at a high rate of speed with its lights off. A neighbor of Iasparro's testified that he observed the car stop in front of Iasparro's house and saw a person get out of the car, approach the house, and return to the car. He heard the person say "That's the fellow" or "That's the guy" when he returned to the car.
Other evidence established that, on September 11, 1986, at between 10 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., defendant and Krueger went to the Surf Lounge in Rockford. Each consumed several beers. They were loud and having a good time. They left the bar at about 11:15 p.m.
At approximately 11:40 p.m., Iasparro was still watching television in his front living room. As he was walking back to the couch, after changing the stations on the television set, he heard what sounded like the same car with the loud mufflers that he had heard earlier. At that time, he was in front of the front window with his back turned to the window. He heard one gunshot and then he heard a rapid series of six to eight gunshots, some of which hit his house. No one was injured, and Iasparro did not see the car or anyone who had done the shooting.
Testimony established that eight slugs hit Iasparro's house. An impact slug was found in the driveway, which was located to the west of the picture window. A slug had hit the house just to the west of the railing on the front porch and two others hit the steps of the front porch. A fifth bullet was found lodged in the upper portion of the wooden front door. Another hit the lower portion of the master bedroom window which is located directly to the east of the front door, and three others impacted the house to the east of the bedroom window. The front picture window is located immediately to the west edge of the front porch and is set in several feet from the front door. A fairly large bush, between 4 and 4 1/2 feet high, stands in front of Iasparro's home and blocked a portion of the picture window.
At about 12:13 a.m. on September 12, 1986, a Winnebago County sheriff's deputy was dispatched to the 400 block of Marquette Street in Machesney Park, adjacent to Rockford, for a possible burglary in progress. As the deputy turned onto Marquette Road, he noticed a vehicle with its lights off, moving slowly, which he stopped. The passenger, defendant, got out of the car and walked around to the rear. Defendant was repeatedly told to remain in the car, but he got nasty and began yelling profanities. The driver, Krueger, was told to step out of the car. The deputy then noticed a shotgun in two or three pieces on the rear seat of the vehicle. The deputy removed several open and several sealed cans of beer from the car as well as the dismantled shotgun. He also noticed that defendant's breath smelled of alcohol.
Another sheriff's deputy, who assisted in the arrest of the two individuals, searched the vehicle and recovered, among other things, two spent nine-millimeter "Para Geco" casings from the floorboard of the rear seat.
At approximately 1 a.m. on September 12, 1986, Iasparro was summoned to the Machesney Park location. He stated that the car, which had been started, sounded like the same car that was in front of his residence around 10 p.m. and, again, at 11:40 p.m. Further, the car appeared to be the same size and color as the one he had seen. At that time, Iasparro also recognized Krueger to be the man who had come to his door at 10 p.m. that night.
Six nine-millimeter Para Geco shell casings were recovered on the street in front of Iasparro's house. Three or four bullet slugs or fragments were recovered from the area in front of Iasparro's home, including one that had been taken from the front door of the home. A search of ...