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08/30/96 PEOPLE STATE ILLINOIS v. ROBERT MUNETSI

August 30, 1996

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
v.
ROBERT MUNETSI, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from Circuit Court of Macon County. No. 94CF331. Honorable Rodney A. Scott, Judge Presiding.

Released for Publication October 2, 1996. As Corrected October 18, 1996.

Honorable James A. Knecht, J., Honorable Frederick S. Green, J. - Concur, Honorable Robert J. Steigmann, J. - Concur. Justice Knecht delivered the opinion of the court.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Knecht

JUSTICE KNECHT delivered the opinion of the court:

Defendant Robert Munetsi appeals the trial court's denial of his motion to reduce sentence following a guilty plea. We reverse and remand.

In July 1994, defendant pleaded guilty to armed robbery, a violation of section 18-2(a) of the Criminal Code of 1961 (Code) (720 ILCS 5/18-2(a) (West 1992)), and three counts of aggravated unlawful restraint, a violation of section 10-3.1 of the Code (720 ILCS 5/10-3.1 (West 1992)). In April 1994, defendant entered the rear door of the Long John Silver's restaurant at 2889 North Main Street in Decatur, Illinois, while two employees were taking out garbage after closing time. Defendant was brandishing a semi-automatic pistol and wearing a bandanna on his face and a hood pulled over his head. He directed the employees into the restaurant and to the manager's office, where he ordered the manager to open the safe. Defendant then bound the hands of the manager and the two employees behind their backs, and ordered them to kneel. He turned up the volume of a television that was already on in the manager's office. Defendant then showed the gun to the manager so he could see there was no magazine in the gun, and told the manager he was not going to hurt them. Defendant took approximately $1,900 from the store safe and ran out the rear door of the restaurant. The police caught him minutes later with the gun and the cash within a few blocks of the restaurant. Defendant later confessed.

In September 1994, the trial court sentenced defendant to 11 years' imprisonment for armed robbery and 3 years' imprisonment on each of the three counts of aggravated unlawful restraint, with all terms to run concurrently. From the bench, the trial court stated more than a minimum term of imprisonment was necessary because of the nature of the offense, the need to deter others, and the need to protect the public.

In November 1994, defendant filed a motion to reconsider sentence. Filed either at the same time or within several days of the motion to reconsider sentence was the following:

"CERTIFICATE OF ATTORNEY

HUGH H. ROWDEN, JR., attorney for Defendant, ROBERT M. MUNETSI, pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 604(d) states as follows:

1. He is and has been an attorney for ROBERT M. MUNETSI in this cause.

2. He participated in all stages of the proceedings herein and is familiar with those proceedings, including the sentencing hearing.

3. He has discussed the sentencing hearing and the sentence of this Court with the Defendant, and the Defendant has requested that this ...


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