APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF COOK COUNTY. HONORABLE THEMIS N. KARNEZIS JUDGE PRESIDING.
Petition for Leave to Appeal Denied October 6, 1994.
Campbell, Buckley, Manning
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Campbell
PRESIDING JUSTICE CAMPBELL delivered the opinion of the court:
Following a bench trial, defendant, Christopher Goosens was found guilty of first degree murder for the shooting of Jose Feliciano, and sentenced to a term of 30 years imprisonment. On appeal, defendant contends that: (1) his conviction should either be reversed or reduced to second degree murder because he acted in self defense; and (2) he was denied effective assistance of counsel. For the following reasons, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.
The following facts are relevant to this appeal. At trial, Luis Santiago testified on behalf of the State that on Sunday, July 7, 1991, at approximately 4 a.m., he was standing on the corner of Mozart Street and Augusta Avenue, Chicago, along with Jose Feliciano, Curtis Collins, Alfarao ("Mexico") Flores, Antonio Flores, and some women, when a black Camaro automobile slowly passed the group. Santiago stated that he and the other men were all members of the Dragons street gang, and that they recognized the Camaro as belonging to a member of their rival gang, the Latin Kings. At that point, Feliciano got into the driver's side of his gray, Buick Regal automobile, and Santiago got into the passenger seat. Alfarao Flores and Melendez got into the back seat of the Buick, and they followed the Camaro. When they reached the intersection of Augusta and Humboldt Boulevard, the Camaro was in front of the Buick, and Feliciano started chasing the Camaro, until the cars were along side each other. At that point, Santiago saw defendant, whom he recognized as Latin King member "Little Fro," in the passenger seat of the Camaro, holding a gun. Defendant began shooting the gun at the Buick, and Santiago and the others ducked down. Santiago heard two or three shots, and then the Buick crashed into a fence at Kedzie and Augusta. After they hit the fence, Santiago saw that Feliciano was bleeding from the head.
On cross-examination, Santiago testified that none of the Dragons had guns. Santiago admitted that he had been in a fight with defendant at a municipal park pool earlier in the summer, and that he now hates defendant because he killed Feliciano.
Jose Melendez testified on behalf of the State to the same essential facts. In addition, he stated that his right hand was injured when the Regal crashed, and that he was treated at St. Mary's Hospital. Melendez identified defendant in a line-up at the police station on July 18, 1991.
Curtis Collins testified that when the Camaro initially passed the group as they stood on the street, he called out, "Watch it there go Little Fro." Collins stated that following the shooting, Angel Ruiz transported Feliciano to Norwegian American Hospital. On July 18 1991, Collins identified defendant in a line-up at the police station.
On cross-examination, Collins stated that at approximately 2:45 a.m. on July 7, 1991, he and the other Dragons witnessed shots being fired from within a passing station wagon. A bullet hit a bystander named Camacho in the foot.
Antonio Torres testified on behalf of the State, that he and Collins ran toward Sacramento when the others got into Feliciano's Buick. Torres did not see the shooting, but heard three shots, and saw the Buick crash.
Chicago Police Detectives Gene Harris and Dennis Keane testified that on July 7, 1991, at 4:30 a.m., they interviewed Trinidad Alamo, defendant's mother, Lydia and Martha Fernandez, defendant's sisters, and Mirta Cotto, defendant's girlfriend, at 2033 West Diversey. Cotto told the officers that she last saw defendant on July 7, 1991, at 2 a.m., and never told the officers that defendant was in Wisconsin.
Mirta Cotto testified that on July 7, 1991, at approximately midnight, she was at 2033 West Diversey with Lydia and Marta Fernandez, and Trinidad Alamo. Cotto stated that she last saw defendant at 9 p.m. on July 7, 1991, and that she spoke with police officers approximately two hours later. Cotto denied that she told the officers that she had last seen defendant at 2 a.m. on July 7, 1991. Cotto stated that defendant had told her that he might go to Wisconsin, and that she told that to the officers. Cotto stated that she thought defendant drove his Lincoln Continental to Wisconsin and returned to Chicago on a bus.
Chicago Police Officer Patrick Foley testified on behalf of the State that on the morning of July 7, 1991, he went to Norwegian American Hospital and interviewed Melendez about the shooting incidents that occurred at 2 a.m. and 4 a.m. Regarding the incident at 4 a.m., Melendez stated that he thought defendant was the driver of the Camaro. On cross-examination Detective Foley admitted that his ...