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People v. Ramos

September 08, 2000

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS,
PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
V.
WILLIAM RAMOS,
DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Kane County. No. 98--CF--1587 Honorable Donald C. Hudson, Judge, Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Geiger

Following a bench trial, the defendant, William Ramos, was found guilty of violating an order of protection (720 ILCS 5/12--30 (West 1998)) and sentenced to an extended term of four years' imprisonment. On appeal, the defendant argues that (1) he was not proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; (2) his conviction must be reversed because the State's proof at trial did not conform to the facts alleged in the indictment; and (3) the statutory penalties prescribed within the offense of violating an order of protection are unconstitutionally vague. We affirm.

On September 16, 1998, the defendant was charged by indictment with one count of residential burglary (720 ILCS 5/19--3 (West 1998)) and one count of violating an order of protection (720 ILCS 5/12--30 (West 1998)). The latter charge alleged that on July 17, 1998, the defendant violated an order of protection by entering the residence of his former wife, Claudia Ramos.

At trial, the State introduced into evidence a copy of an emergency order of protection that had been entered by the circuit court of Kane County on July 10, 1998. The order prohibited the defendant from entering or remaining in Claudia Ramos's residence located at 1269 Nantucket Road in Aurora. The order was in effect between July 10, 1998, and July 28, 1998. The trial court admitted the copy of the order into evidence.

Claudia Ramos testified that on July 12, 1998, at 8:30 p.m., she telephoned her sister and learned that the defendant was on his way to her home. Claudia ran out her front door and got into her car. At that time, the defendant had arrived at the residence and had gotten out of his car. The defendant then got into Claudia's car and told her that he knew that she had obtained an order of protection and that she was going to try to put him in jail.

Claudia further testified that on July 15, 1998, she placed a telephone call to her residence and that the defendant answered the call. Claudia had not given the defendant permission to be in her residence on that date. Claudia telephoned the police to advise them that she had an order of protection and that the defendant was not supposed to be in her residence.

On July 17, 1998, when Claudia arrived home, she saw the curtains in the window move. Claudia believed that the defendant was inside. Claudia drove to a pay phone and called the police. Once the police arrived at her residence, Claudia let a police officer in the back door. The police found the defendant upstairs and arrested him. Once again, Claudia testified that she had not given the defendant permission to be in her home.

On cross-examination, Claudia acknowledged that she had never given the defendant a copy of the order of protection. Claudia also acknowledged that she did not give a copy of the order to the police on July 15, 1998, when she had called them to report that the defendant was in her residence.

Officer Gerald Marrero of the Aurora police department testified that on July 15, 1998, he received a dispatch for a possible violation of an order of protection at the address of 1269 Nantucket. Officer Marrero drove to the scene with his partner, Officer John Saltigeral. When they arrived at the scene, they knocked on the door but there was no answer. Officer Marrero heard footsteps in the residence and instructed Officer Saltigeral to go to the back door. Officer Marrero remained near the front of the house, and a few moments later he observed Officer Saltigeral come through the front door with the defendant.

Officer Marrero placed the defendant under arrest for violating an order of protection and transported the defendant to the Aurora police station. The defendant told Officer Marrero that he did not know that there had been an order of protection entered against him. At the station, Officer Marrero attempted to confirm the existence of the order of protection with the Kane County sheriff's department, but the sheriff's department could not locate the order. Officer Marrero released the defendant from custody because he could not confirm or locate the order of protection. Prior to releasing the defendant, Officer Marrero instructed him to stay away from Claudia and her residence at 1269 Nantucket. Twenty minutes after the defendant was released, the sheriff's department contacted Officer Marrero to advise him that the order of protection had been located and that the order was valid. On cross-examination, Officer Marrero acknowledged that no copy of the order of protection was given to the defendant on July 15, 1998.

Officer Kevin Jenkins of the Aurora police department testified that on July 17, 1998, he drove to 1269 Nantucket in response to a dispatch concerning a possible violation of an order of protection. Officer Jenkins entered the residence through the back door and announced the presence of a police officer. Officer Jenkins found the defendant under a mattress in one of the second-floor bedrooms. The defendant was placed under arrest for violating an order of protection.

The State and the defendant stipulated to a certified copy of the defendant's previous conviction on May 30, 1996, of violating an order of protection. The certified copy was entered into evidence.

The defendant testified that he had been living at 1269 Nantucket late in June and early in July. At this time, Claudia had moved out of the residence with their children and moved into her mother's house. On July 15, 1998, as he was going out of the house, he was arrested by two police officers. He had to remain at the police station for two hours before he was finally released. While at the police station, no officer showed the defendant a copy of the July 10, 1998, order of protection or read to him the contents of the order. The defendant also testified that no officer instructed him to collect his clothing and property and move out of the residence.

The defendant further testified that on July 17, 1998, he was arrested again. At the time of his arrest, the defendant was sleeping in his underwear, and he hid under the ...


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