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People v. Parker

December 05, 2003

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
v.
SCOTT W. PARKER, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of the 14th Judicial Circuit, Rock Island County, Illinois, No. 01-CF-964 Honorable James T. Teros, Judge, Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Slater

PUBLISHED

Defendant Scott Parker was convicted of first degree murder (720 ILCS 5/9--1 (West 2000)) in the death of Catherine Kelley and was sentenced to a 60-year term of imprisonment. Defendant was also convicted of involuntary manslaughter and residential burglary arising from the same incident. On appeal, defendant contends that: (1) the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress; (2) his defense counsel was ineffective; (3) the trial court failed to comply with Supreme Court Rule 605(a); and (4) he is entitled to an additional day of sentencing credit. We affirm and remand with directions.

Facts

As the defendant does not challenge the sufficiency of the evidence, we will not set out a detailed recitation of the trial proceedings. We present only a brief overview of the facts; more information will be related as necessary to resolve particular issues.

On November 12, 2001, the defendant, who had previously performed maintenance work for Kelley, went to her home in Moline, Illinois. Kelley's car was in the driveway, but she did not answer her door when defendant knocked. Defendant entered the home, saw Kelley's purse on the table, and took a credit card from the purse. Defendant heard a noise in the basement and walked toward the basement stairwell, where he encountered Kelley at the top of the stairs. Kelley began screaming and the defendant grabbed onto her as she ran or slipped back down the stairs. Defendant fell going down the stairs and as he got up he wrapped his arm around Kelley and held onto her "real tight" because she was screaming and yelling. Defendant then tried to tie a white piece of cloth around Kelley's mouth. He pulled it tight, tied it, and left in Kelley's car. An autopsy revealed that Kelly died from strangulation, probably by the bathrobe belt found tied around her.

Defendant subsequently used the credit card he had taken to buy power tools which he then pawned. Defendant was arrested on November 16 at a bus stop in Davenport, Iowa, by Davenport police pursuant to an arrest warrant for forgery and theft based on defendant's use of Kelley's credit card. The Davenport police informed Moline police of defendant's arrest, and two Moline detectives, Pablo Reyna and Douglas Garrison, went to Davenport to interview the defendant. Garrison informed the defendant of his Miranda rights and he acknowledged that he understood them. Defendant was then given a form containing the Miranda rights and he was asked to place his initials next to each statement on the form. Defendant began initialing the form but stopped and said "I think I need a lawyer." *fn1 He then said, "I didn't mean to hurt her." Reyna and Garrison then left and went to another room to interview the defendant's mother.

Approximately ten minutes after Reyna and Garrison left, Davenport Detective Thomas entered the interview room and told the defendant that he was going to read to him the warrant that had been the basis for his arrest. According to Thomas, he was required by Iowa law to read the warrant to the defendant. Detective Brown also testified that reading the arrest warrant was an Iowa statutory requirement. After Thomas began reading the warrant, the defendant interrupted him and made some inculpatory statements. Thomas did not respond. The defendant then asked Thomas to get Officer Reyna. Thomas told Reyna and Garrison what had occurred and they went back into the interview room. After the defendant said that he now wished to speak without his lawyer being present, defendant was re-Mirandized and he signed a written waiver of his rights. Defendant subsequently gave a video-taped statement in which he admitted killing Kelley.

Analysis

The defendant first contends that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress the statements he made to police after invoking his right to counsel. Specifically, defendant argues that Detective Thomas's reading of the Iowa arrest warrant constituted further interrogation in violation of Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 16 L. Ed. 2d 694, 86 S. Ct. 1602 (1966) and Edwards v. Arizona, 451 U.S. 477, 68 L. Ed. 2d 378, 101 S. Ct. 1880 (1981). We disagree.

Miranda established that a defendant subjected to custodial interrogation was entitled to certain procedural safeguards, including the right to have an attorney present during questioning. Moreover, "[i]f the individual states that he wants an attorney, the interrogation must cease until an attorney is present." Miranda, 384 U.S. at 474, 16 L. Ed. 2d at 723, 86 S. Ct. at ___. Once a defendant has invoked his right to counsel, he may not be subject to renewed interrogation without his attorney present, "unless the accused himself initiates further communications, exchanges, or conversations with the police." Edwards, 452 U.S. at 485, 68 L. Ed. 2d at 386, 101 S. Ct. at ___.

In this case the defendant instituted a conversation with Detective Thomas and asked to speak with Officer Reyna. He did so, however, only after Thomas began reading the arrest warrant, and a defendant does not waive his right to counsel merely by responding to further police-initiated custodial interrogation. Edwards, 451 U.S. at 484, 68 L. Ed 2d at 386, 101 S. Ct. at ___. The critical issue, therefore, is whether Thomas's reading of the arrest warrant constituted "interrogation."

In Rhode Island v. Innis, the Supreme Court held that "interrogation" for Miranda purposes includes not only express questioning, but also any words or actions by the police, other than those normally attendant to arrest and custody, that the police should know are reasonably likely to elicit an incriminating response. Innis, 446 U.S. 291, 301, 64 L. Ed. 2d 297, 308, 100 S. Ct. 1682, ___ (1980). This definition focuses primarily upon the perceptions of the defendant, rather than the intent of the police. However, "since the police surely cannot be held accountable for the unforeseeable results of their words or actions, the definition of interrogation can extend only to words or acts on the part of police officers that they should have known were reasonably likely to elicit an incriminating response." (Emphasis in original.) Innis, 446 U.S. at 301-02, 64 L. Ed. 2d at 308, 100 S. Ct. at ___.

Should Detective Thomas have known that reading the Iowa arrest warrant to the defendant was reasonably likely to elicit an incriminating response? Thomas testified that he was required by Iowa law to read the warrant to defendant, and he did so at what he felt was the first opportunity. He described what occurred as follows:

"I entered the room and I had the warrant in my hand. I did not even sit down in the chair. *** I informed Mr. Parker that I would read to him the warrant that I had issued for his arrest. I read to him, to any peace officer in the State of Iowa[,] information upon oath having been filed this day before the Iowa District Court, Scott County, Iowa that the crime of forgery, 715A.6[,] theft fourth degree 714.2 sub-paragraph 4, theft fifth ...


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