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People v. Dorsey

Court of Appeals of Illinois, Fourth District

October 31, 2016

CHAD L. DORSEY, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from Circuit Court of McLean County No. 13CF362 Honorable Scott Daniel Drazewski, Judge Presiding.

          JUSTICE APPLETON delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justices Holder White and Steigmann concurred in the judgment and opinion.



         ¶ 1 Defendant, Chad L. Dorsey, files this direct appeal from his conviction of home invasion after a bench trial. He claims the trial court erred when it held the victim's psychological injury was sufficient to satisfy the injury requirement of the home-invasion statute absent evidence of physical contact. He also claims the evidence was insufficient to prove his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt when the State failed to prove he intentionally caused the victim's psychological injury. We affirm.

         ¶ 2 I. BACKGROUND

         ¶ 3 In March 2013, the State filed a three-count information against defendant, charging him with (1) home invasion for entering the home of Trisha Convis (at trial, she was referred to as Trisha Baker), knowing someone was present, and armed himself with a dangerous weapon, a Taser (count I) (720 ILCS 5/19-6(a)(1) (West 2012)); (2) home invasion for entering Convis's home, remaining there after knowing someone was present, and intentionally injuring Normal police officer Ronald Stoll, who was inside (count II) (720 ILCS 5/19-6(a)(2) (West 2012)); and (3) disarming a peace officer by taking Officer Stoll's Taser while the officer was arresting him (count III) (720 ILCS 5/31-1a(a) (West 2012)). The grand jury filed superseding indictments on all three charges.

         ¶ 4 Initially, defendant entered into a plea agreement, pleading guilty to count III. The trial court set counts I and II for a jury trial. A few days later, defendant filed a pro se motion to withdraw his guilty plea, alleging his attorney gave him "inaccurate legal advice." The court did not rule on defendant's motion. Thereafter, the State charged defendant by indictment with another count of home invasion, alleging defendant entered Convis's home, remained in the home after knowing someone was present, and intentionally caused injury to Convis, who was inside (count IV) (720 ILCS 5/19-6(a)(2) (West 2012)). This count is subject of this appeal.

         ¶ 5 The trial court conducted a bench trial. The State presented testimony from Marcie Taylor, Matthew Baker, Trisha Baker, Ronald Stoll, Todd Van Hoveln, and Shane Bachman. Defendant did not present any evidence. The following is a summary of the witnesses' testimony.

         ¶ 6 Normal police officers Stoll, Van Hoveln, and Bachman were called upon to serve an arrest warrant on defendant. Defendant was inside Taylor's second-floor apartment when police arrived. As Taylor was talking to Stoll, defendant ran from the bathroom out the back door. Stoll chased him. Van Hoveln was standing near the back door of the apartment building, so defendant turned and ran downstairs to the lower-level apartments. Defendant tried to enter apartment number two. Stoll caught up to defendant and ordered him to place his hands behind his back. Defendant lowered his shoulder and broke into apartment number two.

         ¶ 7 Matthew Baker testified he and his wife, Trisha Baker, live in apartment number two. On the night of the incident, they were home watching television with Trisha's two daughters, ages 14 and 10. Defendant broke into their apartment from the back door and ran through the apartment, toward the front door. He was unable to unlock the deadbolt to get out. Stoll chased defendant through the apartment, caught him at the front door, and a struggle ensued in the living room.

         ¶ 8 Matthew said Trisha was "[f]reaking out, " saying, "oh, my God; oh, my God; oh, my God, " and the two children were "[s]cared out of their minds." The children had "shocked expressions on their face[s]." Trisha said her younger daughter was "screaming and shocked, " while her older daughter had a look on her face like " 'I can't believe this is happening.' " Trisha moved her children into the kitchen to keep them "out of harm's way."

         ¶ 9 Stoll pulled out his Taser and ordered defendant to the ground. Defendant feigned cooperation, but he turned around and knocked the Taser out of Stoll's hand. Defendant grabbed the Taser and shot it at Stoll, hitting the wall. Stoll pulled out his service pistol and ordered defendant to drop the Taser. Defendant complied but ran into the kitchen. Bachman had entered the apartment to assist Stoll. They both struggled with defendant, attempting to gain control over him. A garbage can had been knocked over and the officers were slipping on whatever was on the floor. Defendant broke the kitchen window and jumped through. The officers chased him and eventually took him into custody.

         ¶ 10 When the struggle moved to the kitchen, Matthew, Trisha, and the children ran upstairs to their neighbors' apartment. When Matthew and Trisha returned to their apartment, they found their back door, kitchen window, and furniture broken. Shattered glass and garbage were on the floor in the kitchen. Trisha testified: "Myself and my youngest [daughter], we were crying, very scared, very shaken. I actually was really, really, really shaken." Stoll said the family members "were very frightened, it was obvious."

         ¶ 11 Trisha said, at the time of trial, she was "still actually shaken" and "really scared." She arms herself with a butcher knife when she hears noises in the apartment. Her youngest daughter will not sleep in her own bedroom and she gets ...

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