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08/24/88 the People of the State of v. Gerald Schlaiss

August 24, 1988

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE

v.

GERALD SCHLAISS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT



APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, SECOND DISTRICT

528 N.E.2d 334, 174 Ill. App. 3d 78, 123 Ill. Dec. 789 1988.IL.1297

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Lake County; the Hon. John R. Goshgarian, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

JUSTICE WOODWARD delivered the opinion of the court. NASH and REINHARD, JJ., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE WOODWARD

Defendant, Gerald Schlaiss, was convicted of battery (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 38, par. 12-3(a)(1)) after a bench trial in the circuit court of Lake County. On appeal, defendant contends that he was denied counsel because his representation by an unlicensed law student violated Supreme Court Rule 711 (107 Ill. 2d R. 711). We reverse and remand the cause for a new trial.

Defendant was charged by information with the offense of battery when he allegedly caused bodily injury to Janice Schlaiss by striking her in the face. A second information charged the defendant with having violated a protective order when he allegedly committed the battery for which he was charged in the original information.

At trial, defendant was represented by Madison Gordon, a law school graduate working with the Lake County public defender's office pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 711. Immediately prior to trial, Gordon stated that he was operating under the supervision of Maureen Casey under the supreme court rule. The record also indicates that Assistant Public Defender, Maureen Casey was present at the trial. The State was represented by Mary Ann Phillips, who was also a Rule 711 law student. Phillips stated that she would be supervised by Steven McCollom of the State's Attorney's office, who was present in court.

The State began its case with the testimony of Janice Schlaiss. Mrs. Schlaiss said that on May 26, 1986, she went to the residence of her former husband, Gerald Schlaiss, to pick up her two children. She said that the defendant came out of his room, followed her to the car, and hit her in the face with his palm, thereby breaking her nose.

Susan McKenzie testified next for the State. She said that she saw Mrs. Schlaiss shortly after the alleged incident and that she seemed upset, and her nose was swollen.

After the close of the State's case in chief, Madison Gordon moved for a directed verdict as to both counts. The court granted this motion with respect to the charge of violation of an order of protection based on the fact that no order of protection had been admitted.

Gerald Schlaiss testified on his own behalf. He related that when Mrs. Schlaiss arrived at his home on May 26, 1986, to pick up their children, she appeared to be intoxicated. He said that he reached into her car to turn off the ignition in an effort to prevent her from driving, at which point Mrs. Schlaiss bit him on the arm. In response, Schlaiss jerked his hand away, causing his arm to strike Mrs. Schlaiss in the face.

Closing arguments were conducted off the record. The court found the defendant guilty of battery.

A sentencing hearing was conducted on September 3, 1986. The defendant was, again, represented by Madison Gordon. Gordon identified himself for the record as Madison Gordon, assistant public defender. The record also indicates that Assistant ...


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