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11/29/89 In Re J.K. Iii

November 29, 1989

IN RE J.K. III, A MINOR (THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF


APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, SECOND DISTRICT

Illinois, Petitioner-Appellee, v.

J.K. III, Respondent-Appellant)

547 N.E.2d 1276, 191 Ill. App. 3d 415, 138 Ill. Dec. 655 1989.IL.1839

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Kane County; the Hon. R. Peter Grometer, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

JUSTICE INGLIS delivered the opinion of the court. UNVERZAGT, P.J., and REINHARD, J., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE INGLIS

Respondent, J.K., appeals from orders of the circuit court of Kane County adjudicating him a delinquent minor and a ward of the court and placing him on probation for one year. J.K. also appeals from the circuit court's denial of his motion to suppress evidence and quash his arrest; however, because we agree with J.K.'s contention that the circuit court lacked subject-matter jurisdiction, we need not address his contentions directed to the motion to suppress.

The record reveals the following facts. On November 12, 1987, J.K. broke into a neighbor's home and stole a handgun. On January 16, 1988, J.K. and a friend were detained by a Montgomery police officer who thought that the two boys were runaways. Upon discovery of the handgun, the officer arrested J.K. for unlawfully concealing a weapon. While in police custody, J.K. admitted to the theft. The State filed a petition for adjudication of delinquency which charged J.K. with, inter alia, theft and criminal damage to property. The petition, dated January 19, 1988, named both J.K.'s mother and father and stated their address. The family was intact, and J.K. and his parents resided at the same address. The record contains no indication that J.K. and his parents were ever served or otherwise formally notified of the petition for adjudication.

At the detention hearing held on January 19, 1988, J.K. appeared with his father, John K. J.K. appeared with his appointed counsel and his father at all other proceedings; however, Peggy K., J.K.'s mother, never appeared. The social investigation report prepared by a probation officer on January 21, 1988, indicated that Peggy K. had been contacted by the probation officer twice, once by telephone on January 19, 1988, and once in person on January 20, 1988.

On appeal, J.K. contends that the circuit court lacked jurisdiction to conduct its delinquency proceedings because his mother was never properly notified of the delinquency petition pursuant to the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 (Act) (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 37, par. 801-1 et seq.). J.K. correctly notes that the Act requires a petition for adjudication of delinquency to set forth the names and addresses of the minor, his parents, his legal guardian, or the person or persons having custody or control of the minor. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 37, par. 805-13(2).) The Act further provides:

"When a petition is filed, the clerk of the court shall issue a summons with a copy of the petition attached. The summons shall be directed to the minor's legal guardian or custodian and to each person named as a respondent in the petition." (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 37, par. 805-15(1).)

The summons is to be served personally or left at the respondent's usual place of abode (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 37, par. 805-15(5)); however, the Act provides for notice by certified mail or publication under certain limited circumstances (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 37, par. 805-16). As this court has previously noted, "[t]he method of notice appropriate to a particular respondent depends heavily on the State's ability to identify and locate that person; only service by publication is excused under certain conditions, and if personal or abode service or service by certified mail is possible, the statute requires it." In re J.M. (1988), 170 Ill. App. 3d 552, 565.

As J.K. correctly observes, the petition in the instant matters named him, his father, and his mother as respondents. Further, the petition noted the same address in Montgomery, Illinois, for all three respondents. Although J.K., his counsel and his father appeared at all proceedings, his mother did not attend any of the proceedings. J.K. urges this court to hold all of the proceedings before the circuit court void for lack of jurisdiction due to the lack of notice to his mother. We determine that the instant matter is controlled by People v. R.S. (1984), 104 Ill. 2d 1, wherein our supreme court held that the State, in neglecting to notify a named respondent with a known ...


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