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06/27/89 the People of the State of v. John Williams

June 27, 1989

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE

v.

JOHN WILLIAMS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT



APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, FIRST DISTRICT, SECOND DIVISION

541 N.E.2d 1175, 185 Ill. App. 3d 840, 133 Ill. Dec. 737 1989.IL.1005

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. Arthur Cieslik, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

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

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE DIVITO, Defendant John Williams appeals his conviction for aggravated criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

Defendant was indicted on October 7, 1985, on 19 counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault based on oral copulation, 18 counts of criminal sexual assault based on anal penetration, 19 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse based on oral copulation, 19 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse based on anal penetration, 1 count of aggravated criminal sexual assault based on sexual intercourse, 18 counts of kidnapping, 19 counts of aggravated kidnapping, and 19 counts of unlawful restraint in connection with alleged sexual conduct between defendant and 12-year-old Kevin Frenden, the complaining witness, on April 1 through 4, 1985, April 6 through 8, 1985, April 15, 1985, July 29 through 31, 1985, and August 1 through 8, 1985. Before trial, the State nol-prossed all counts except for 19 counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault based on oral copulation and 19 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse based on oral copulation, and 19 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse based on anal penetration.

Prior to the commencement of the trial and prior to the voir dire, defendant was represented by a Cook County public defender. Defendant filed a motion for the appointment of a Chicago Bar Association lawyer to represent him. That motion was denied. On December 11, 1985, the public defender representing defendant indicated to the trial court that defendant wished to represent himself. After defendant's pretrial motions were disposed of, the trial court urged defendant to accept representation by counsel, but advised him that he had the right to represent himself, although he would "not be given any special consideration." The court further advised defendant that he could receive a "possible prison sentence of six to thirty years in the State penitentiary," and that "the circumstances are such that an extended term can be had." The court then told defendant that Mr. Grzecka, a public defender, would stand by to assist him, but would not try his case. The court finally asked defendant if he understood what he was told and defendant responded in the affirmative. Defendant thereafter proceeded pro se. Defendant indicated that he did not want Mr. Grzecka's assistance, but the court nevertheless ordered Mr. Grzecka to provide defendant with standby assistance.

Also prior to the commencement of trial and prior to the voir dire, the trial court directed the State to go through the 132-count indictment, count by count, and indicate whether the State would nolpros or amend any of the counts. Defendant and standby counsel were present during this procedure and defendant was provided with a copy of the indictment. After the State reviewed each count, the court addressed defendant as follows:

"THE COURT: I guess that completes the charges that are pending against you, Mr. Williams. It also indicates the cases that the State intends to present to the jury.

Do you understand that, sir?, DEFENDANT: Yes, sir I do."

The court then told defendant that the State was proceeding against him with the sexual assault and sexual abuse charges. The court stated: "Do you understand that? I think that pretty much explains the situation."

At the commencement of the voir dire, the trial Judge informed all prospective jurors as a group that the State must prove defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; that defendant is presumed innocent; and that defendant need not testify or present any evidence, and "[nobody] has a right in any way to comment on whatever he does." In addition, the trial court asked each prospective juror if he or she would be fair and impartial. The jurors eventually selected had each responded to this question in the affirmative. The trial court also asked eight of the jurors selected whether they had any quarrel with the State's burden of proof or with the proposition that defendant need not prove anything. Each of the eight jurors responded in the negative. All jurors selected were present during this questioning and none stated that they had any qualms about the State's burden of proof or with the proposition that defendant need not prove anything. Apparently, none of the jurors selected were questioned individually regarding defendant's right not to testify or the presumption of innocence.

The State's first witness at defendant's trial was Kevin Frenden, the complaining witness. Frenden testified that he met defendant in February 1985 at his friend Wayne Stephens' house. Frenden testified that Stephens told him defendant was Stephens' grandfather.

Frenden testified that in April 1985 when he was 12 years old, he ran away from home, and on his second night away from home, he met with Stephens and another friend of his, Terry Lofton, and went to defendant's house at 46th and Emerald in Chicago. Frenden stated that he spent that night at defendant's house and slept next to defendant. Frenden testified that defendant awakened him during the night when defendant tried to take off Frenden's jump suit. According to Frenden, defendant put his mouth on Frenden's penis while Frenden pretended to be asleep.

Frenden testified that two nights later, he returned to defendant's house with Terry Lofton. Frenden stated that he spent that night in defendant's house and defendant "did the same thing he did the night before." Frenden testified that two nights later, he also spent the night at defendant's house and the same thing happened. Frenden stated that he went to Stephens' house the next day, where his mother found him and turned him over to the police. Frenden testified that one or two weeks later he became a ward of the State.

Frenden stated that he ran away from Cleaver Homes on or about July 29, 1985, after having stayed there for two months. According to Frenden, he went to defendant's new apartment at Archer and Halsted with another boy from Cleaver Homes. Frenden testified that defendant gave the other boy money to get back to Cleaver Homes and that he stayed at defendant's apartment during the next two weeks. Frenden stated that on the third day of his stay at defendant's apartment, Lofton came over and defendant sucked Lofton's penis. According to Frenden, after Lofton left, defendant rubbed his penis between Frenden's legs near his buttocks and ejaculated. According to Frenden, during Frenden's two-week stay at defendant's apartment, defendant either sucked Frenden's penis or rubbed his penis against Frenden's buttocks, or both, every day except for the first two days. Frenden stated that defendant would give him money, sometimes $20 or $40, after each such incident. Frenden testified that he would spend some of the money playing video games in the snack shop at 2501 South Archer.

David Waclawski testified that he owned the snack shop at 2501 South Archer and that during August 1985 he saw Frenden at his snack shop two or three times per week. Waclawski testified that during this same time period, he saw Frenden in his snack shop with an "older man," whom he identified in court as defendant.

Terry Lofton testified that he met defendant in the fall of 1984 through Wayne Stephens, who introduced defendant as his grandfather. Lofton testified that the first day he met defendant, he went with Stephens to defendant's house at 46th and Emerald. Lofton stated that defendant sucked Stephens' penis after telling Stephens to pull down his pants. Lofton testified that he saw defendant suck Stephens' penis two days later at defendant's house. According to Lofton, defendant asked Lofton if he could suck Lofton's penis, but Lofton refused. Lofton testified that he saw defendant suck Stephens' penis again one week later in defendant's house.

Lofton stated that he was in defendant's house at 46th and Emerald one time in April 1985 when Frenden was there. He stated that he saw defendant suck Frenden's penis at that time. Lofton also testified that he was in defendant's apartment at Archer and Halsted during the summer of 1985 every two days during the time Frenden was staying with defendant. Lofton stated that he saw defendant put his penis between Frenden's legs and also suck Frenden's penis. Lofton testified that after defendant was arrested, he received three $25 checks from defendant and that defendant telephoned him twice and told him he would be hurt if he testified.

Wayne Stephens testified that he met defendant in August 1984. He stated that he went to defendant's house at 46th and Emerald in August 1984 and defendant asked him to pull down his pants. Stephens testified that he pulled down his pants and defendant sucked his penis and then gave him $1.

Stephens also testified that he introduced defendant to Lofton in the fall of 1984 and to Frenden in the winter of 1984-85. Stephens stated that he told both Lofton and Frenden that defendant was his grandfather. According to Stephens, he and Lofton went to defendant's house at 46th and Emerald several times. Stephens testified that one time defendant chased Lofton around the room and then sucked his penis. Stephens stated that when he was alone with defendant, defendant would put his penis in Stephens' behind. Stephens also stated that he went to defendant's house at 46th and Emerald several times with Frenden and that during these times, defendant would put his penis between Frenden's legs.

Peter Cammllarie, a youth officer in the Chicago police department, testified that he was assigned to investigate the disappearance of Kevin Frenden in August 1985. Cammllarie testified that he located Frenden on August 9, 1985, after talking with Lofton. Cammllarie testified that he interviewed Frenden regarding his stay with defendant and that he told Frenden at that time that he "understood" that defendant "was a child molester." According to Cammllarie, Frenden then began to cry and stated that he had been staying at defendant's apartment; that Lofton had also been a "victim" of defendant; and that Stephens was "involved with defendant."

Cammllarie testified that he processed Frenden and sent him back to Cleaver Homes and then made out a report on defendant for aggravated criminal sexual assault. Cammllarie testified that defendant was arrested by another police officer and brought to the police station. Cammllarie stated that he read defendant his rights after booking him. According to Cammllarie, defendant told him that he was born in July of 1930.

The State's last witness was Anthony O'Reilly. O'Reilly testified that he worked at the Stock Yard Truck Stop at 4500 South Halsted and received calls from defendant during the summer of 1986 asking him to locate Lofton and Frenden. O'Reilly testified that ...


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