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People v. Scarbrough

Court of Appeals of Illinois, Third District

May 13, 2015

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
JAMAR SCARBROUGH, Defendant-Appellant

Appeal from the Circuit Court of the 12th Judicial Circuit, Will County, Illinois. Circuit Nos. 12-CM-1506 and 12-TR-36534. The Honorable Domenica Osterberger, Judge, presiding.

Dimitri Golfis (argued), of State Appellate Defender's Office, of Ottawa, for appellant.

James Glasgow, State's Attorney, of Joliet (Dawn D. Duffy (argued), of State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor's Office, of counsel), for the People.

PRESIDING JUSTICE McDADE delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justices Carter and Wright concurred in the judgment and opinion.

OPINION

McDADE, J.

Page 1099

[¶1] The defendant, Jamar Scarbrough, entered a blind plea of guilty to driving while his license was revoked (625 ILCS 5/6-303(a) (West 2012)) and to obstructing identification (720 ILCS 5/31-4.5(a)(2) (West 2012)). The circuit court sentenced him to 12 months of conditional discharge and to 30 days in the Will County jail, with credit for 25 days served. On appeal, the defendant argues that he is entitled to a new sentencing hearing because the court erred when it found that: (1) he was ineligible for court supervision; and (2) he was required to serve a minimum of 30 days in jail. Alternatively, the defendant argues

Page 1100

that he is entitled to a remand for new postplea proceedings because defense counsel failed to comply with Illinois Supreme Court Rule 604(d) (eff. July 1, 2006). We affirm.

[¶2] FACTS

[¶3] On April 24, 2012, the defendant received a citation for driving while his license was revoked (625 ILCS 5/6-303(a) (West 2012)). In connection with the incident, the defendant furnished a false name, " Jonathon Riggins," to the police officer who conducted the traffic stop. Accordingly, the defendant was also charged with obstructing identification (720 ILCS 5/31-4.5(a)(2) (West 2012)).

[¶4] On February 25, 2013, the parties appeared in court while they were working on a plea agreement. The parties asked the court to enter a finding on a dispute they had regarding whether the defendant was eligible for supervision on the charge of driving while his license was revoked. The State first pointed out that the defendant had been convicted on February 21, 2003, for violating section 6-303 of the Illinois Vehicle Code. The State then argued that because the defendant's most recent violation of section 6-303 allegedly occurred on April 24, 2012, the 2003 conviction was within 10 years such that he was not eligible for supervision under section 5-6-1(j) of the Unified Code of Corrections (Unified Code) (730 ILCS 5/5-6-1(j) (West 2012)). Defense counsel disagreed that the date of the most recent offense was the operative date; rather, defense counsel argued that the operative date would be the date of disposition on his current offense. Thus, because the defendant had not been convicted on the current offense within 10 years of the 2003 conviction, defense counsel argued that the defendant was in fact eligible for supervision. The court continued the case to give the parties time to research the issue.

[¶5] Before the hearing was concluded, defense counsel inquired further regarding the defendant's potential sentence. Defense counsel asked the court that if the defendant was not eligible for supervision, whether he would be eligible to receive community service. The court stated that the defendant would not be eligible for community service, as " the other relevant provision of the sentencing code is that number three -- it's 4.5 of the disposition statute, which is 5-5-3, says a minimum term of imprisonment of 30 days shall be imposed for a third violation of subsection c of 6-303."

[¶6] On March 11, 2013, the parties returned to court. After hearing arguments on the issue of whether the defendant was eligible for supervision, the circuit court ruled that the operative date for the prior offense was the date of conviction, as subsections (1) and (2) of section 5-6-1(j) referred to a conviction or to supervision. Next, the court ruled that the operative date for the current offense was the date of the charge--not the date of a conviction--because the first paragraph of section 5-6-1(j) specifically referred to a defendant who was charged with a violation of section 6-303. The court also reiterated " that section 4.5 of 5-5-3 requires a minimum term of imprisonment of 30 days to be imposed."

[¶7] After the court issued its ruling, the defendant entered a blind plea of guilty to both charges. The court administered guilty plea admonishments, which included the court admonishing the defendant that he was not eligible for supervision and that he was facing a minimum of 30 days in jail. The court accepted the defendant's guilty plea and set the case for sentencing.

[¶8] On April 15, 2013, the circuit court held a sentencing hearing. During the

Page 1101

hearing, the court inquired as to the reason why the defendant's license was revoked at the time of the instant offense. The prosecutor stated, " [o]n the date of the offense, the statutory summary suspension, and the bond forfeiture DUI were in effect." The court then clarified with the parties that the basis for the defendant's revoked license at the time of this offense was a bond forfeiture conviction for driving under the influence (DUI).[1] The prosecutor also stated that the defendant's criminal history included a statutory summary suspension in 2002 and convictions for driving while license suspended in both 2002 and 2003.

[¶9] During recommendations, defense counsel stated that she believed the defendant was supervision-eligible, but that if the court disagreed, she recommended 300 hours of community service work. The court ultimately sentenced the defendant to 12 months of conditional discharge and to 30 days in the Will County jail, with credit for 25 days served.

[¶10] On April 18, 2013, the defendant filed a motion to reconsider the sentence. He alleged that more than 10 years had elapsed since his last violation of section 6-303 of the Code and, as a result, he was eligible for court supervision, despite the circuit court's finding to the contrary.

[¶11] On June 11, 2013, defense counsel filed a certificate pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 604(d) (eff. July 1, 2006), which stated:

" 1. Counsel has consulted with the Defendant in person to ascertain the Defendant's contentions of error in the sentence or the entry of a ...

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