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People v. Skillom

Court of Appeals of Illinois, Second District

March 6, 2017

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
MARKIE L. SKILLOM, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Circuit Court of Lake County. No. 11-CF-2453, Honorable George Bridges, Judge, Presiding.

          BURKE JUSTICE delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justices Birkett and Spence concurred in the judgment and opinion.

          OPINION

          BURKE JUSTICE.

         ¶ 1 Defendant, Markie L. Skillom, appeals from the denial of his motion to withdraw his plea of guilty to aggravated robbery (720 ILCS 5/18-5(a) (West 2010)). He raises two issues on appeal: (1) whether the trial court erred in denying his motion to withdraw his plea without first appointing new counsel to represent him on his claim of ineffective assistance of counsel; and (2) whether he is entitled to a credit of $5 per day spent in presentencing custody against $95.71 in certain fines. For the reasons that follow, we find that, although the trial court erred in failing to inquire into defendant's ineffective-assistance claim in a neutral and nonadversarial proceeding, the error was harmless. We also find that defendant is entitled to a $2830 credit for time spent in presentencing custody, which is sufficient to offset the fines at issue. Accordingly, we modify the trial court's sentencing order to reflect that these fines have been satisfied, and we affirm.

         ¶ 2 I. BACKGROUND

         ¶ 3 On August 17, 2011, defendant was charged with aggravated vehicular hijacking (720 ILCS 5/18-4(a)(1) (West 2010)), vehicular hijacking (720 ILCS 5/18-3(a) (West 2010)), aggravated robbery (720 ILCS 5/18-5(a) (West 2010)), unlawful possession of a stolen motor vehicle (625 ILCS 5/4-103(a)(1) (West 2010)), and robbery (720 ILCS 5/18-1(a) (West 2010)).

         ¶ 4 On August 6, 2012, defendant pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery, a Class 1 felony. At the outset of the plea hearing, the following colloquy occurred:

"[DEFENSE COUNSEL]: Your Honor, I believe we have a negotiation to present.
[THE STATE]: Your Honor, the defendant would enter an open plea to Count 3, which is a Class 1 aggravated robbery. The defendant does have two prior Class 2s in his background. He was arraigned on that and advised of that, so he will receive a Class X sentence. We didn't do a cost sheet on this because I assume that when he gets sentenced is when we do that.
[DEFENSE COUNSEL]: Your Honor, [defendant] and I have met, both Saturday and early this morning, to discuss the case. The State has indicated it's ready, that it had all of its witnesses. So he and I also this morning have discussed the Class X sentencing aspect of the case.
THE COURT: You're [defendant]; is that correct? THE DEFENDANT: Yes, sir.
THE COURT: [Defendant], did you hear what was just represented to the Court as being the negotiation?
THE DEFENDANT: Yes.
THE COURT: And that is the negotiation that I was just advised of, is you're pleading guilty to Count 3, aggravated robbery, a Class 1 felony, but, however, you are to be sentenced as a Class X felon for this offense. And is that your understanding of what you're pleading guilty to?
THE DEFENDANT: Yes.
* * *
[DEFENSE COUNSEL]: Your Honor, [defendant] did have a question. I know the Court advised him-not about the waiver of trial, per se, but I know the Court advised him about being a Class X case. But I think I want it to be clear that [defendant] and I- and your Honor, if you have any questions-have discussed the fact that, with a Class X sentence, it is not a probabtionable [sic] or drug court type of offense.
THE COURT: So I don't understand. What is the question?
[DEFENSE COUNSEL]: Judge, just so I understand it, since this is a Class X sentence, it is not probationable. I think he was advised of that, but he was asking me a little bit about that. So I don't know if the Court has any more questions-
THE COURT: I want to make sure I understand. What is the question? Is it a probationable offense?
[DEFENSE COUNSEL]: Yes.
THE COURT: That's your question, [defendant]?
THE DEFENDANT: Yeah. I understand it was dropped down to a Class 1, which is 4 to 15, and I was asking about that, because that's what he had told me earlier. But now he's saying that, because of the background, it stays a Class X or whatever. That's what I'm trying to understand.
THE COURT: No. No.
[DEFENSE COUNSEL]: And when [defendant] says now, he doesn't mean the bench. He means when we were talking ...

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