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April 18, 1994



Released for Publication June 7, 1994. Petition for Leave to Appeal Denied October 6, 1994.

Campbell, Buckley, O'connor, Jr.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Campbell

PRESIDING JUSTICE CAMPBELL delivered the opinion of the court:

Defendant Stanley Clauson was charged with misdemeanor criminal sexual abuse. In People v. Clauson (1989), 182 Ill. App. 3d 268, 537 N.E.2d 1048, 130 Ill. Dec. 719, we reversed his conviction and remanded the cause for a new trial, holding that there was no waiver of a jury trial. Following a jury trial in the circuit court of Cook County, defendant was found guilty of criminal sexual abuse and sentenced to one year conditional discharge, with 30 days in the Cook County Department of Corrections and a $500 fine. Defendant now appeals his conviction, alleging that the trial court erred in: (1) refusing to permit defendant to elicit testimony of the complainant's bad reputation for truthfulness and veracity; (2) improperly restricting cross-examination of the complainant regarding possible bias or motive to testify falsely; and (3) admitting a prior incident involving an alleged sex act not shown to have been a crime.

The record on appeal indicates the following facts. The State presented the testimony of D.E., the complainant. D.E. testified that on July 15, 1986, he was a 15 year old resident of Midlothian. D.E. indicated that on that day, after finishing work, he went to the First United Methodist Church in Harvey, where he took arts and crafts classes. D.E. indicated that between 3:30 and 4 p.m., he, defendant, who was a co-director of the church youth program, and defendant's two daughters left the church in defendant's van.

According to D.E., defendant dropped off the two daughters before proceeding to drive D.E. home. D.E. testified that he fell asleep in the captain's chair in the back of the van en route to his home. D.E. indicated that when he awoke, his jeans and underpants were down around his thighs, defendant had D.E.'s penis in his mouth, and a policeman was tapping on the side window of the van. D.E. pulled up his pants and exited from the back of van. D.E. indicated that he spoke with Sergeant Dirk Petry, telling him his name age and what defendant had been doing to him. Thereafter, D.E. and Sergeant Petry went to the Posen police department.

During cross-examination, the trial court sustained the State's objections to defense questions regarding whether D.E. had ever been in trouble for telling a lie, whether defendant's wife had ever counseled D.E. about lying and whether defendant had ever criticized D.E. for entering defendant's daughter's bedroom.

Officer Scott Davis testified that on July 15, 1986, he received a dispatch at approximately 5:10 p.m. regarding a suspicious van at 2828 West 147th Street. Officer Davis testified that he and Sergeant Petry responded to the dispatch, meeting with John Merrick, the business and property owner at that address. After speaking with Merrick, the two officers approached defendant's van, which Officer Davis indicated was concealed in a bushy area. According to Officer Davis, the driver's side window was closed and no one was at the wheel, but that there was motion in the back of the van. Officer Davis indicated that he tapped on the window, whereupon defendant appeared from the back of the van. Officer Davis testified that defendant seemed very nervous when asked for his driver's license. Upon learning from Sergeant Petry that there might be a problem, Officer Davis asked defendant to follow him to the police station.

Sergeant Petry testified that as defendant appeared from the back of the van, he noticed someone else in the back of the van. Sergeant Petry asked this person, D.E., to step outside. Sergeant Petry indicated that he asked D.E. what was going on, and that D.E. stated that defendant was bothering him. Sergeant Petry indicated that he and D.E. had a conversation substantially similar to that described in D.E.'s testimony. Sergeant Petry testified that he notified Officer Davis of the possible problem and that everyone then went to the police station.

John Merrick testified that he was the president of Custom Plate Glass at 147th and Mozart Streets in Posen. Merrick testified that on July 15, 1986, at approximately 5 p.m., he observed a customized tan van turn onto Mozart, which is a dead end street adjacent to his property. According to Merrick, he had observed the same van parked on Mozart in front of the driveway at the rear of his property on January 15, 1986. On that date in January, Merrick had walked down to the van, looked through the window and saw one man with his head in the lap of another. Merrick testified that the man's head was moving up and down. Merrick returned to his shop and told his wife to call the police. However, Merrick testified, he then saw the van driving away from the property. Merrick indicated that he observed the driver of the van and identified the driver as defendant. Merrick also testified that he contacted the police when he saw the van again on July 15, 1986.

At the close of the State's case, defendant moved for directed verdict; the trial court denied this motion. The trial court also considered the State's motion in limine to bar the testimony of four people who had testified at defendant's prior bench trial regarding D.E.'s reputation for truthfulness and veracity. Following argument, the trial court granted the motion as to three of the witnesses and denied it as to one of the witnesses.

Defendant called Steven Humphrey, Assistant Superintendent of Schools for District 205, who testified that defendant worked at the Thornridge High School on January 15, 1986, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Donald Bauc, who also worked at Thornridge High School, testified that he and defendant attended a council meeting from 3:30 to 4:55 p.m. Bauc testified that he did not know what defendant did after the meeting, but noted that Posen would have been more than ten minutes away from Thornridge High School during rush hour. Defendant also produced several witnesses that testified to defendant's good character.

Following closing arguments and jury deliberations, defendant was found guilty of criminal sexual ...

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