Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County. Honorable Paul J. Nealis, Judge Presiding.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Greiman
JUSTICE GREIMAN delivered the opinion of the court:
Defendant Robert Heineman pleaded guilty to reckless homicide and driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). The trial court imposed a 10-year sentence for reckless homicide and a concurrent 3-year term for DUI.
On appeal defendant only challenges his 10-year sentence forreckless homicide. He contends that the sentence constitutes an impermissible double enhancement and results from the trial court's consideration of improper factors and bias.
Defendant's guilty plea arises from a drunk driving collision which killed Dorothy Todd on November 1, 1991. The State presented the factual basis for the plea.
Terrell Garth would testify that at 3:55 p.m. on November 1, 1991, he was near Bernice and Wentworth Roads in Lansing when he observed defendant drive a yellow Ryder truck through a parking lot. Defendant struck a parked car causing it to hit another parked car, then backed up his truck, left the parking lot without stopping and proceeded northbound on Wentworth Avenue.
Christopher Hansen would testify that on the same afternoon about 4 p.m. he was driving southbound on Wentworth Avenue in Calumet City when he observed the northbound yellow Ryder truck swerve between lanes, veer again into the southbound lane and strike a white car. Hansen drove to the scene of the accident and found that the truck had completely crushed the white car then had proceeded into the store front of a building.
Officer Alexander of Calumet City would testify that he was the first policeman to arrive at the accident scene. The front end of the driver's side of the white car was crushed and the sole occupant, Dorothy Todd, was dead. Officer Alexander found defendant in the back compartment of the truck and empty beer cans strewn on the floor of the truck. Defendant smelled of alcohol, his speech was unintelligible, he was unable to remove the wallet from his pocket and he was under the influence of alcohol.
Officer Cap would testify that she was the second police officer to arrive at the accident scene. Officer Cap observed that defendant's speech was slurred and unintelligible, his breath had a strong odor of alcohol and he was unable to walk or turn without falling. Defendant failed sobriety tests administered in the field and scored .29 on the breathalyzer.
Additional evidence would show that Dorothy Todd sustained numerous injuries in the collision and died of vehicular homicide. Dorothy Todd was 63 years old, a wife and mother of three.
As to the DUI charge, the State tendered certified copies of defendant's two prior convictions for DUI, i.e., on September 10, 1977, in Wisconsin and on April 1, 1985, in Indiana.
Defendant stipulated to the factual basis for the plea presented by the State. The trial court accepted defendant's guilty pleas, entered judgment on ...