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09/27/89 the People of the State of v. John Clark Bridges

September 27, 1989

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE

v.

JOHN CLARK BRIDGES, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT

THE PROCEDURES GOVERNING A TRANSFER HEARING AND THE CRITERIA TO BE CONSIDERED ARE CONTROLLED BY SECTION 2-7(3)(A) OF THE JUVENILE COURT ACT (ILL. RE

v.

STAT. 1985, CH. 37, PAR. 702-7(3)(A)), WHICH PROVIDES, IN PERTINENT PART:



APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, FIFTH DISTRICT

545 N.E.2d 367, 188 Ill. App. 3d 961, 136 Ill. Dec. 843 1989.IL.1517

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Williamson County; the Hon. Snyder Howell, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

JUSTICE GOLDENHERSH delivered the opinion of the court. WELCH, P.J., and RARICK, J., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE GOLDENHERSH

After a jury trial, defendant, John Clark Bridges, was found guilty of two counts of aggravated battery. One count was based on the victim's status as a peace officer (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 38, par. 12-4(b)(6)). The other count was based on the fact that defendant had caused great bodily harm to the victim (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 38, par. 12-4(a)). Defendant was sentenced to five years on each count. The sentences were to run concurrently, but consecutive to defendant's prior juvenile Disposition. In this cause, defendant raises the following issues: (1) whether defendant was improperly transferred from juvenile to criminal court; (2) whether defendant was improperly convicted for two counts of aggravated battery; and (3) whether defendant's felony sentence can be made consecutive to his term of imprisonment under his juvenile Disposition. We affirm in part and vacate in part.

At the time of the instant offense, defendant was 16 years old and was awaiting being sent to the Juvenile Department of Corrections at Joliet. Defendant had previously been tried as an adult for murder (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 38, par. 9-1) but was not convicted of that crime. Defendant had instead been convicted of attempted murder, voluntary manslaughter, aggravated battery, and unlawful use of weapons. However, the State had not moved to have defendant tried as an adult, but rather had relied on section 2-7(6)(a) of the Juvenile Court Act (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 37, par. 702-7(6)(a)), which provides that the definition of a delinquent minor does not apply to a minor of at least 15 years of age who is charged with murder. After defendant's acquittal on the murder charge and convictions on four other charges, a Dispositional order was entered pursuant to the Juvenile Court Act which committed defendant to the Juvenile Division of the Department of Corrections until age 21.

Prior to Dispositional hearing, on November 28, 1986, at approximately 4:30 p.m., defendant was in the juvenile facility at the Williamson County jail. One other juvenile, William Hale, was also in this facility. The two juveniles had neither been allowed to take showers that day nor had they been allowed to make telephone calls. Defendant and Hale wanted to talk to a juvenile officer concerning the lack of shower and telephone use, but were told that none were available. In response to this treatment, Hale jammed the lock on the outside door to the juvenile area with a toothbrush. One of the guards was drawn to this area when she noticed cookies scattered about the floor. She assumed something was wrong and immediately solicited the aid of three other officers. The four officers entered the juvenile area after forcing the door open. The officers proceeded to tell the juveniles to return to their cells. The juveniles refused. Two other officers were called to assist. When there was still no movement by the juveniles, the officers equipped themselves with night sticks. There was then what was described as a "Mexican standoff." Finally, Deputy Ronald McDonald entered the area with a riot stick, which was described as three feet in length, approximately two inches wide. When McDonald entered the room, he was then face to face with defendant. As McDonald turned to say something to the other officers, he was hit on the left cheek by defendant.

McDonald and the other officers agreed that McDonald did not hit defendant nor did he make any movement with the riot stick or his hands that could have been construed as an attack. Defendant admitted hitting McDonald, but argued that he did so only in self-defense. Defendant further admitted McDonald did not hit or touch him first, but defendant was reacting to what he thought was going to be a blow. Witness Hale testified that McDonald punched defendant in the stomach with the night stick and only then did defendant punch McDonald. Defendant was ultimately restrained and both juveniles returned to their cells.

McDonald's treating physician testified that McDonald suffered a fractured left cheekbone. Blood was found behind McDonald's ear, which was an indication that he may have suffered a broken skull. In order to confirm or deny this, McDonald was sent to Evansville, Indiana, for further examination by a neurosurgeon. There it was determined that there was no skull fracture. McDonald was off work for approximately three months due to his injuries. He stated he still suffers some slight hearing loss in his left ear, sinus problems, nerve damage in his face, and had to undergo an operation to repair a damaged eye socket.

After this incident, the State moved to have defendant transferred to adult court. The State's motion was granted, and defendant was ultimately convicted of two counts of aggravated battery.

The first issue defendant raises on appeal is whether he was improperly transferred from juvenile court to criminal court. He argues that he was improperly transferred because the trial court failed to give proper consideration to his personal history and background and failed to evaluate and consider the availability of other juvenile facilities. The State responds that the record supports the trial court's determination to transfer defendant's case to criminal court. We agree.

"(a) In making its determination on a motion to permit prosecution under the criminal laws, the court shall consider among other matters: (1) whether there is sufficient evidence upon which a grand jury may be expected to return an indictment; (2) whether there is evidence that the alleged offense was committed in an aggressive and premeditated manner; (3) the age of the minor; (4) the previous history of the minor; (5) whether there are facilities particularly available to the Juvenile Court for the treatment and rehabilitation of the minor; and (6) whether the best interest of the minor and the security of the public may require that the minor continue in custody or under supervision for a period extending beyond his minority."

This statute is rooted in the constitutional requirement of procedural due process as stated by the Supreme Court in Kent v. United States (1966), 383 U.S. 541, 577, 16 L. Ed. 2d 84, 95, 86 S. Ct. 1045, 1055. However, the State need only present evidence sufficient to persuade the trial court, in the sound exercise of its discretion that in light of the statutorily prescribed criteria, transfer is warranted. (People v. Taylor (1979), 76 Ill. 2d 289, ...


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