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People v. Scott

Court of Appeals of Illinois, First District, Fourth Division

December 15, 2016

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
ANTHONY SCOTT, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County. No. 13 CR 8824 Honorable Nicholas Ford, Judge Presiding.

          ELLIS PRESIDING JUSTICE delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justices Howse and Burke concurred in the judgment and opinion.

          OPINION

          ELLIS PRESIDING JUSTICE.

         ¶ 1 Defendant Anthony Scott, along with his codefendant Keith Lucious, were charged with armed robbery, aggravated robbery, and aggravated unlawful restraint for accosting a woman in an alley and taking two backpacks from her. Defendant was 16 years old at the time of the offense, and codefendant was 15 years old. Defendant and codefendant were tried at a joint bench trial and convicted of aggravated robbery and unlawful restraint.

         ¶ 2 In this appeal, defendant alleges that his trial attorney was ineffective for failing to file a motion to quash his arrest and suppress evidence obtained from him, where the description relayed to the police officers was too vague to support the officer's detention of defendant and codefendant in the area. For the reasons stated below, we decline to reach this question because the record is insufficient to fully assess whether the police had a reasonable, articulable suspicion sufficient to support the officers' investigatory stop. We thus affirm defendant's conviction for aggravated robbery.

         ¶ 3 We agree with defendant's claim that his unlawful-restraint conviction must be vacated pursuant to the one-act, one-crime doctrine. We also agree that an amendment to the automatic transfer provision of the Juvenile Court Act of 1987, which excluded the offense of armed robbery from the list of offenses requiring automatic transfer of a juvenile to adult court, applied retroactively to his case. Accordingly, we vacate defendant's sentence for aggravated robbery and remand for resentencing to the juvenile court, with directions that the State be permitted the opportunity to seek a discretionary transfer to adult court.

         ¶ 4 I. BACKGROUND

         ¶ 5 The State charged defendant with armed robbery predicated on his and codefendant's being armed with a firearm during the robbery, aggravated robbery, and aggravated unlawful restraint. The aggravated robbery charge alleged that, on April 5, 2013, defendant and codefendant committed a robbery "while indicating verbally, or by their actions *** that they were presently armed with a firearm or other dangerous weapon."

         ¶ 6 At the time of defendant's trial, armed robbery committed with a firearm by an offender who was at least 15 years old was an offense requiring defendant's case to be transferred to adult court without a hearing. 705 ILCS 405/5-130(1)(a) (West 2012). Both defendant and codefendant elected to have bench trials.

         ¶ 7 Naritza Castellanos testified that, at 10:30 a.m. on April 5, 2013, she was distributing fliers in an alley near 4251 West Haddon Avenue in Chicago. Castellanos was carrying two backpacks with her. The backpacks contained fliers, keys, a cell phone, and $20 in cash.

         ¶ 8 She testified that two young men, whom she identified as defendant and codefendant, approached her and asked her for money. She said she did not have any, and codefendant hit her in her face and stomach. Defendant and codefendant threw Castellanos to the ground, took her backpacks, and fled. Castellanos also testified that codefendant pressed a gun to her right temple while she was on the ground.

         ¶ 9 Castellanos testified that defendant had red hair and that codefendant wore "like braids or bows" in his hair. Castellanos said that codefendant wore a black and brown checkered jacket, and defendant wore a black jacket.

         ¶ 10 Shortly after defendant and codefendant fled, a passerby loaned his cell phone to Castellanos so that she could call the police. She testified that, a few minutes after she called the police, she saw defendant again in the same area, but he had changed into a white jacket with red lettering on the back. Some time later, the police brought defendant and codefendant to Castellanos in a squad car, and Castellanos identified them as the boys who had robbed her.

         ¶ 11 Officer Michna testified that he and his partner responded to a call of a robbery near Thomas Street and Kildare Avenue. The prosecutor asked Michna if he was given "a description of any sort regarding the robbery, " and Michna replied, "Just it was armed robbery and two male black teens." The court interjected, "I think she means the description of the individuals involved, " and Michna said, "Two male black teens."

         ¶ 12 Michna saw two black teenagers about two blocks from the scene of the incident, whom he identified as defendant and codefendant, and approached them in his car. Michna said that one of them "had braids and the other one had orangish-red hair." Michna asked where they were coming from, and defendant and codefendant "gave conflicting stories." Michna testified that he and his partner put defendant and codefendant into their squad car and drove them back to Castellanos's location to conduct a showup. Castellanos identified defendant and codefendant as the robbers.

         ¶ 13 After Castellanos identified defendant and codefendant, they were placed under arrest and searched. The police recovered a set of keys from defendant, which Castellanos identified as her keys. Defendant and codefendant did not have a cell phone or any money on them. Michna testified that no firearm was recovered in connection with the robbery.

         ¶ 14 On cross-examination, defendant's counsel asked Michna if he stopped defendant and codefendant simply because of their proximity to the site of the robbery, and Micha replied, "No, based on the red hair. They were male teens, black teens." He also testified that he saw them less than two blocks from the reported site of the robbery.

         ¶ 15 Detective Suzanne Chevalier testified that she, an assistant State's Attorney (ASA), and a youth officer questioned defendant about the robbery. Defendant said that he and codefendant skipped school that day to go shoe shopping. They saw Castellanos in an alley and decided to take her backpacks.

         ¶ 16 Chevalier testified that defendant admitted that he and codefendant approached Castellanos, threw her to the ground, and took her backpacks. Defendant added that "he told the victim, don't make [codefendant] shoot you." Defendant also said that he did not know why he said, "don't make him shoot you, " because codefendant "only had a cell phone with him." Defendant said that he found keys in one of the backpacks, and that, after the robbery, he and codefendant walked around the neighborhood looking for Castellanos's car "so that they could take it."

         ¶ 17 After Detective Chevalier testified, the State rested. Defendant moved for a directed finding on the armed robbery count, which the court granted.

         ¶ 18 Neither defendant nor codefendant elected to testify or present any evidence.

         ¶ 19 The trial court found defendant guilty of aggravated robbery and unlawful restraint. Defense counsel filed a motion for a new trial, which the trial court denied.

         ¶ 20 Because defendant had been acquitted of the offense that led to his being tried in adult court (i.e., armed robbery with a firearm), the State moved to have defendant sentenced as an adult, noting that he was 16 years old and was on juvenile probation. See 705 ILCS 405/5-130(1)(c)(ii) (West 2012) (permitting State to move for adult sentencing when juvenile charged with automatic-transfer offense is acquitted of automatic-transfer offense and convicted of another, non-automatic-transfer offense). Defense counsel argued that defendant was a "follower, " that it was not his idea to rob Castellanos, and that defendant had been in special education classes in school. The court granted the State's motion, citing defendant's criminal history and the fact that this offense involved violence.

         ¶ 21 The court sentenced defendant to five years' incarceration for aggravated robbery. Defendant's mittimus also reflects a three-year sentence for "aggravated unlawful restraint." Defendant appeals.

         ¶ 22 II. ANALYSIS

         ¶ 23 A. Ineffective Assistance of Counsel/Motion to Suppress

         ¶ 24 Defendant first contends that his attorney was ineffective for failing to file a motion to quash his arrest and suppress Castellanos's identification of him at the scene of the robbery, the keys found on defendant's person, and defendant's subsequent statement to the police and ASA. Defendant claims that the record shows that the police stopped him without any reasonable suspicion that he had committed a crime, leading to the illegal recovery of that evidence. The State argues that the police had ...


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