Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

People v. Pickens

December 28, 2004

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
v.
ANTHONY PICKENS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County. No. 02 MC6-23544. The Honorable Christopher J. Donnelly, Judge Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Garcia

(Nunc pro tunc 11/30/04)

[9]     On November 29, 2002, a misdemeanor complaint was filed against the defendant, Anthony Pickens, charging him with domestic battery (count I) (720 ILCS 5/12-3.2(a)(2) (West 2002)). Following a bench trial, the defendant was found guilty and sentenced to conditional discharge for a period of 12 months.

The defendant now appeals arguing (1) the State presented insufficient evidence to prove him guilty of domestic battery beyond a reasonable doubt (720 ILCS 5/12-3.2(a)(2) (West 2002)), and (2) the statutorily prescribed penalty for domestic battery (730 ILCS 5/5-6-1(c) (West 2002)) violates the proportionate penalties clause of the Illinois Constitution (Ill. Const. 1970, art. I, §11). We affirm.

Background

The charges against the defendant stemmed from events occurring on November 29, 2002, Thanksgiving Day.

Courtney R. Pickens, the defendant's wife, testified that she, the defendant, and her 16-year old son, Paul Kelsey, Jr., had plans to go to her sister's home for Thanksgiving dinner. An argument ensued between Courtney and the defendant regarding the family's Thanksgiving dinner plans. On cross-examination, Courtney testified that the defendant became upset when he learned dinner would not be ready when they arrived at her sister's home. Courtney testified that the defendant said something disrespectful regarding her sister, and Courtney uninvited the defendant to her sister's home. Courtney then testified that she and Paul went to her sister's home without the defendant and returned home around midnight.

Courtney testified that upon returning home she tried to enter the garage using the garage-door opener but it did not work. Courtney testified that when she and Paul left the house earlier in the evening, the garage door had been in proper working order. Courtney testified that she sent Paul into the house through the front door to see what the problem was. Courtney waited outside approximately five minutes and followed Paul into the house when he did not return. Courtney testified that she did not see the defendant when she entered the house. Courtney testified that Paul was in the garage; she went there too and discovered the garage door opener had been disconnected from the outlet.

Courtney testified that she went to the utility closet in the kitchen to get a stool and some tools to reconnect the power. Courtney testified that when she entered the kitchen she noticed the defendant lying on the sofa watching television, but she did not say anything to him. On cross-examination, Courtney agreed that the defendant did not say anything to her either and did not rant or rave. Courtney testified that she also noticed that clothing from her bedroom had been thrown all over the living-room floor. On cross-examination, Courtney clarified that her night clothes, consisting of a pajama top and bottoms and a hair scarf, were strewn on the floor.

Courtney testified that when she returned to the garage, Paul stood on the stool and reconnected the power. The garage door successfully opened, and Courtney told Paul to pull the car in. Courtney testified that because Paul was a new driver, she directed him into the garage from the top step of a landing connecting the garage to the house. Courtney described the landing as four steps, with a railing, and a door separating the landing in the garage from the house.

Courtney testified that as she was directing Paul into the garage, the defendant came to the door and tried to slam it shut. On cross-examination, Courtney testified that the defendant tried closing the door twice. Courtney testified that the first time that the defendant attempted to close the door, she hit the door with her hand and said, "I'm coming in." Courtney testified that her hand kept the door from closing all the way, but she removed her hand as she was scared it would get smashed. Courtney testified that while she was dealing with the defendant, Paul was slowly pulling the car into the garage.

Courtney testified that immediately thereafter, the defendant again tried to close the door, so she put the back of her foot on the door to prevent it from closing as she continued to direct Paul into the garage. On cross-examination, Courtney testified that she was using her right foot and that she was not sure whether the defendant actually saw her foot. Courtney testified that she continued saying, "I'm coming in." Courtney testified that the defendant did not respond to her but continued to exert pressure on the door in an attempt to close it. Courtney testified that with her back to the door, she braced the back of her foot against the door and held onto the railing for support; however, she did not have a chance to get her foot out of the door and it was smashed. Courtney testified that she screamed in pain and the defendant did not say anything but released the door. Courtney also testified that Paul jumped out of the car.

Courtney testified that she hobbled to the kitchen and the defendant told her to sit down. Courtney testified that she had bruises on her foot and her toes were numb. Courtney testified that there was no broken skin. Courtney testified that she called the police and while she was doing so, the defendant was walking around the family room. On cross-examination Courtney agreed that after she called the police the defendant was not acting aggressively towards her, saying evil words to her, or threatening her. Courtney testified that the police and paramedics arrived, she was interviewed, and her foot was examined. The paramedics concluded that her foot was probably not broken but she was taken to the emergency room. At the emergency room, her foot was wrapped and she was given crutches and pain medication. Courtney testified that she was on crutches for four days.

Paul testified that on the evening in question he was 16 years old. Paul also testified that Courtney was his mother and that the defendant was his step-father. Paul testified that to celebrate Thanksgiving he went to his aunt's home for dinner. Paul testified that before he went to his aunt's house, he heard Courtney and the defendant having a dispute, but could not recall what the argument was about. Paul testified that he and Courtney returned home from his aunt's house about midnight and were unable to open the garage door. Paul testified that when he and Courtney left the house earlier in the evening, they were able to open and close the garage door using the garage-door opener. Paul testified that Courtney told him to go into the house through the front door and see what was wrong. Paul testified that Courtney did not enter the house with him and that he did not have any contact with the defendant when he entered the house.

Paul testified that upon entering the house, he went into the garage and found that the power cord had been disconnected from the outlet. Paul testified that he told Courtney that the power cord was disconnected, and then he and Courtney went to get a stool and tools in order to plug the power cord back in. Paul testified that once the garage door was operational, Courtney told him to pull the car into the garage. Paul testified that he had only had his driver's license for a couple weeks, so Courtney directed him into the garage. Paul testified that Courtney was standing on the top step of the landing.

Paul testified that as he pulled the car into the garage, he saw the door from the garage into the house shut, and he heard Courtney say that "we're both coming in." Paul acknowledged that he had pulled the car midway into the garage and the car's window was rolled up. Paul testified that Courtney continued to guide him into the garage, but the door from the garage to the kitchen shut again. Paul testified that although Courtney was facing him, he could not see the lower portion of her body because of the railing; however, he "saw her *** holding the railing, and through her facial expressions, [she] look[ed] like she was trying to push the door open." Paul testified that he then heard Courtney scream. Paul testified that because the car was pulled in all the way, he jumped out and followed Courtney into the house. Paul testified that Courtney hopped into the house, through the family room, and into the kitchen. Paul testified that although he did not see Courtney's foot, he heard her call the police and saw the police and paramedics arrive, and he rode with her to the hospital.

The State rested, the defense motioned for a directed finding, and the trial court denied the motion. The defendant then took the stand.

The defendant testified that he, Courtney, and Paul planned to celebrate Thanksgiving with Courtney's sister. The defendant testified that Courtney never asked him about Thanksgiving Day plans, but told him that the holiday would be spent at her sister's. The defendant testified that he started getting ready around 3 p.m., and asked Courtney if they could stop by his brother's home to say "hi" to his relatives before going on to her sister's home. The defendant testified that Courtney said no "because she doesn't like people." The defendant testified that Courtney later explained that people made her nervous. The defendant testified that he and ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.