Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

People v. Lane

Court of Appeals of Illinois, First District, Fourth Division

March 23, 2017

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
BENJAMIN LANE, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County No. 15 DV 70879 Honorable Laura Bertucci-Smith, Judge Presiding.

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

OPINION

          ELLIS PRESIDING JUSTICE

         ¶ 1 Defendant Benjamin Lane was charged with domestic battery. After a bench trial, the court found him guilty of the uncharged offense of reckless conduct, finding that reckless conduct was a lesser-included offense of domestic battery. In this appeal, defendant argues that the trial court erred in making this finding. We disagree and hold that the trial court properly convicted defendant of reckless conduct.

         ¶ 2 I. BACKGROUND

         ¶ 3 The State charged defendant with domestic battery, alleging that he "knowingly or intentionally without legal justification caused bodily harm to Raven Austell[, ] a family or household member, " when he "struck *** Austell about the head causing injury."

         ¶ 4 At trial, Austell, defendant's ex-girlfriend, testified that she and defendant broke up on January 25, 2015. The next day, she went to defendant's apartment to get her keys back from him and to return defendant's parking pass. Austell said that she and defendant exchanged the items outside his apartment building while she sat in her car. Austell testified that, after they exchanged the items, defendant reached in through her open car window and punched her in the face. The Chicago police officer who responded to the scene testified that Austell had some bruising, redness, and minor swelling on her face.

         ¶ 5 Defendant denied punching Austell. He testified that he gave Austell her keys and that she reluctantly returned his parking pass to him.

         ¶ 6 The court found defendant guilty of reckless conduct, finding that defendant reached into the car to retrieve his parking pass and that, as he reached in, he hit Austell in the face. The court found that defendant "shouldn't have been struggling to get the pass, and that it was reckless."

         ¶ 7 Defendant filed a posttrial motion arguing that reckless conduct was not a lesser-included offense of domestic battery and, consequently, he could not be convicted of that uncharged offense. The court denied the motion. Defendant appeals.

         ¶ 8 II. ANALYSIS

         ¶ 9 Defendant's only argument on appeal is that he could not be convicted of reckless conduct, because it was not a lesser-included offense of domestic battery.

         ¶ 10 Because a defendant has a fundamental due process right to notice of the charges against him, he generally may not be convicted of an offense that he has not been expressly charged with committing. People v. Clark, 2016 IL 118845, ¶ 30. But a defendant may be convicted of an uncharged offense if it is a lesser-included offense of a crime expressly charged in the charging instrument, and if the evidence at trial rationally supports a conviction on the lesser-included offense and an acquittal on the greater offense. Id.

         ¶ 11 To determine whether an uncharged offense is a lesser-included offense of a charge, we apply the "charging instrument" approach, wherein we determine whether the facts in the charging instrument include "a broad foundation or main outline of the lesser offense." Id. ΒΆ 31. The charging instrument need not explicitly state all of the elements of the lesser offense in order to meet this ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.