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The People of the State of Illinois v. Alfred A. Pohl

May 3, 2012

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS,
PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
v.
ALFRED A. POHL,
DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Du Page County. No. 09-DV-701 Honorable Elizabeth W. Sexton, Judge, Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Zenoff

JUSTICE ZENOFF delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion.

Presiding Justice Jorgensen and Justice Bowman concurred in the judgment and opinion.

OPINION

¶ 1 On May 4, 2009, defendant, Alfred A. Pohl, was arrested for battering his girlfriend and two of her daughters. Defendant posted bond on May 5, 2009, and, soon thereafter, his case proceeded to a jury trial. As a result of that trial, defendant was convicted of 3 counts of domestic battery (720 ILCS 5/12-3.2(a)(2) (West 2008)), and he was sentenced to 12 months of conditional discharge. As part of the sentence, the trial court imposed various fines and fees for each count. These included, among others, $10 drug court/mental health court fines; $210 domestic violence fines; $15 court automation fees; $15 document storage fees; $75 clerk's fees; and $25 court security fees. After defendant was sentenced, and without ever taking issue with the fines and fees imposed or claiming that he was entitled to credit for the time he served in custody before sentencing, defendant timely appealed. On appeal, defendant argues that these fines and fees must be reduced or vacated, because he did not receive credit for presentencing custody and some of the fines and fees were imposed on all of the convictions despite the fact that the convictions arose from a single case. For the reasons that follow, we affirm as modified in part and vacate in part.

¶ 2 Before considering the substance of defendant's appeal, we observe that defendant never challenged in the trial court any of these fines and fees or whether he was entitled to presentencing credit. However, defendant may take issue with these matters now. See People v. Thompson, 209 Ill. 2d 19, 27 (2004) (void order may be attacked at any time); People v. Woodard, 175 Ill. 2d 435, 457-58 (1997) (whether a defendant may receive $5-per-day credit toward his fines may be raised for first time on appeal). The State concedes that defendant is entitled to presentencing credit; that one of his $10 drug court/mental health court fines may be offset by the two days defendant served in presentencing custody; and that three court security fees and three clerk's fees should not have been imposed. However, the State argues that the imposition of multiple domestic violence fines, multiple court automation fees, and multiple document storage fees was proper. We address each of the challenged fines and fees in turn.

¶ 3 First, we consider whether defendant is entitled to a $5-per-day credit against one $10 drug court/mental health court fine. Because whether defendant is entitled to this offset presents a question of law, our review is de novo. People v. Andrews, 365 Ill. App. 3d 696, 698 (2006).

¶ 4 Section 110-14(a) of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963 (Code) (725 ILCS 5/110-14(a) (West 2008)) delineates under what circumstances a defendant is entitled to presentencing credit. Specifically, section 110-14(a) provides:

"Any person incarcerated on a bailable offense who does not supply bail and against whom a fine is levied on conviction of such offense shall be allowed a credit of $5 for each day so incarcerated upon application of the defendant. However, in no case shall the amount so allowed or credited exceed the amount of the fine." Id.

¶ 5 As section 110-14(a) makes clear, a defendant is entitled to a $5 credit against his fines for each day that he served in presentencing custody. Our supreme court has concluded that a drug court/mental health court fine, though labeled a fee (see 55 ILCS 5/5-1101(d-5) (West 2008)), is, in actuality, a fine. People v. Graves, 235 Ill. 2d 244, 255 (2009). As such, a drug court/mental health court fine may be credited by the time a defendant served in custody before sentencing.

¶ 6 Here, the record reflects that defendant served two days in custody before he was sentenced. Thus, he is entitled to a credit of $10 against one of his drug court/mental health court fines. See People v. Atteberry, 153 Ill. App. 3d 10, 14 (1987) (credit for three days defendant served in custody before sentencing could be applied toward $15 fine; $15 credit could not then be used toward satisfaction of $20 fine).

¶ 7 Second, we consider whether imposing three clerk's fees was proper. Because resolving that issue requires us to examine the statute that authorizes the fee, our review is de novo. See People v. Marshall, 242 Ill. 2d 285, 292 (2011).

¶ 8 Section 27.2(w) of the Clerks of Courts Act (705 ILCS 105/27.2(w) (West 2008)) dictates the costs and fees that must be assessed in criminal and quasi-criminal cases. Specifically, as relevant here, it states:

"(1) The clerk shall be entitled to costs in all criminal and quasi-criminal cases from each person convicted or sentenced ...


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