Enoch v. Gramley, 93-1003.

Citation861 F. Supp. 718
Decision Date22 August 1994
Docket NumberNo. 93-1003.,93-1003.
PartiesWillie E. ENOCH, Plaintiff, v. Richard B. GRAMLEY, Defendant.
CourtUnited States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. Central District of Illinois





Sheri J. Engelken, Paula M. Taffe, Kirkland & Ellis, Chicago, IL, for plaintiff.

Penelope Gainer, Asst. Atty. Gen., Springfield, IL, for defendant.


McDADE, District Judge.

Before the Court is Willie E. Enoch's ("Petitioner") Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus Doc. # 3 filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Respondent in his Answer, requests that the Petition be denied and dismissed.1


Sometime in the late hours of April 22 or early hours of April 23, 1983, Armanda Kay Burns was brutally murdered. The body of Ms. Burns was found in her basement apartment. Ms. Burns' hands had been bound with a coat hanger behind her back, her jacket and shirt pulled down around her arms, and her clothing below the waist removed. The victim's bra was slightly raised from its normal position. A cloth covered her face. Ms. Burns had been stabbed several times in the face, back and chest, and her throat had been slashed. Ms. Burns' chest and abdominal cavities were laid open by a knife wound which extended from her sternum to her pubic bone. Ms. Burns' brutalized corpse was discovered by her boyfriend, Derek Proctor, and her brother and sister-in-law, Tyrone and Caroline Burns, at approximately 2:15 a.m. on April 23, 1983.

Armanda Burns was, at the time of her murder, twenty-five years old and employed as a supervisor in the housekeeping department of Methodist Medical Center ("Methodist") in Peoria, Illinois. Ms. Burns lived by herself in a basement apartment located approximately one block from Methodist Medical Center. On April 22, 1983, Ms. Burns spent from 12:00 p.m. until 2:40 p.m. with Derek Proctor. Derek Proctor ("Proctor") was Ms. Burns' boyfriend of eight months. During their time together that afternoon, Ms. Burns and Proctor met Caroline and Tyrone Burns and arranged to meet them late that evening at approximately 12:30 a.m. Sometime between 3:00 and 3:15 p.m., Ms. Burns reported for work. Ms. Burns worked the 3:00 p.m. to 11:45 p.m. shift at Methodist Medical Center.

At 11:30 p.m. on the evening of April 22, 1983, Ms. Burns and several members of the Methodist housekeeping staff congregated in her office. Three of these staff members testified at trial that Petitioner entered Ms. Burns' office and inquired as to the whereabouts of his brother who was an employee at Methodist. These witnesses testified that Petitioner and Ms. Burns carried on a conversation. Petitioner was clothed in a blue pin stripe suit and what was described as a "dingy" white shirt. Ms. Burns "punched out" of Methodist at approximately 11:47 p.m. and, accompanied by Petitioner, began walking toward her apartment. Petitioner and Ms. Burns were last seen walking together approximately 100 feet from Ms. Burns' apartment.

Pursuant to the plans Ms. Burns and Proctor had made earlier that day, Proctor arrived at Ms. Burns' apartment sometime between 11:50 p.m. and 12:00 a.m. on the evening and early morning hours of April 22 and 23, 1983. Proctor rang Ms. Burns' doorbell repeatedly, but received no response. Having failed to find Ms. Burns in her apartment, Proctor sat outside the apartment and waited for Ms. Burns to return. Proctor waited in vain for five to ten minutes for Ms. Burns and then walked to Methodist believing that Ms. Burns might still be at work. At approximately 12:10 a.m., Proctor arrived at Methodist and met Winston Ragon, a Methodist security officer. Proctor told Mr. Ragon that he was looking for Ms. Burns and requested that Mr. Ragon telephone the housekeeping office to check if Ms. Burns was still in the office. Mr. Ragon placed the call and informed Proctor that he received no answer. Mr. Ragon testified that Proctor then said that he was just at Ms. Burns' apartment, there was a window broken, he saw a man running from the apartment, and there was no response to his ringing of the doorbell. Mr. Ragon noted that Proctor's clothing was neat in appearance. Proctor concluded his conversation with Mr. Ragon at approximately 12:20 a.m. and walked to the lobby to call Ms. Burns' apartment. Proctor received no response to his telephone call.

Having failed to reach Ms. Burns by telephone, Proctor returned to her apartment and again rang her doorbell. Again, Proctor received no response. Proctor then walked across the street to Glen Oak Towers, bought a pack of cigarettes, and returned to Ms. Burns' apartment. Proctor again rang the doorbell. He received no response and sat down outside the apartment to wait for Ms. Burns. Proctor testified that at approximately 12:45 a.m. to 12:50 a.m., he heard Ms. Burns' door open. Proctor further testified that he turned and saw a black man dressed in a dark blue, pin-striped suit carrying an off-white shirt in his hands exiting Ms. Burns' apartment. Proctor identified this man as Petitioner. Proctor testified that Petitioner bumped into him on the way out of the apartment and stated in response to Proctor's question concerning Ms. Burns' whereabouts that she was inside the apartment. Proctor rang the doorbell and received no response. Proctor testified that he then turned, ran up the street, and saw Petitioner running across a field and on to Kumpf Street. Proctor testified that he then lost sight of Petitioner.

Proctor returned to Ms. Burns' apartment, rang the doorbell, and knocked on the apartment's windows. Again, Proctor received no response. Proctor testified that he then went across the street to Glen Oak Towers and attempted unsuccessfully to telephone Ms. Burns' mother. Proctor testified that he then returned to Ms. Burns' apartment, again rang the doorbell, and again received no response. Proctor testified that he then went downtown to several bars in search of Petitioner. Proctor failed to locate Petitioner and at approximately 2:00 a.m. went to the home of Tyrone and Caroline Burns. Proctor, accompanied by Tyrone and Caroline Burns, went to Ms. Burns' apartment. Upon arriving at Ms. Burns' apartment, Proctor pushed in a window, peered into the apartment from outside, and made the grisly discovery of Armanda Kay Burns' slain body. The Peoria police were immediately notified and were the first to enter the apartment.

Officer Richard Ledbetter of the Peoria Police Department was the first police officer to arrive at the scene of the murder. Officer Ledbetter met Proctor outside Ms. Burns' apartment. Officer Ledbetter testified that Proctor's appearance was neat and that he was crying. As additional members of the Peoria police department arrived, the investigation of the murder of Ms. Burns began. The police recovered near the crime scene a white shirt which appeared to have blood on it. In addition, a kitchen type knife with a brown wooden handle was discovered in the field across which Proctor stated that Petitioner had fled. Police observed blood in the entrance way, living room, and bedroom areas of Ms. Burns' apartment. No blood was observed in the kitchen area.

Acting upon information provided by Proctor and members of Petitioner's family, Officers Hoskins and Cannon of the Peoria Police Department began searching for Petitioner at the home of his girlfriend, Louise Pate ("Pate"). The officers found Petitioner at Pate's home, placed him under arrest, and took him to the Peoria Police Department. At the police department, Petitioner stated that on the night of Ms. Burns' murder, he had seen and spoken to her at Methodist, walked with her to within one block of her home, and given her some cocaine in a matchbook cover. In response to the officers' statement that Ms. Burns was a victim of murder, Petitioner stated "No, not Kay Burns, Kay Burns."

At the time of Ms. Burns' murder, Petitioner was living with Louise Pate. Pate testified that on April 22, 1983, Petitioner left her home at approximately noon dressed in blue, baggy pants, a vest, a blue, pin-striped suit coat, a white shirt, and black shoes. Pate further testified that Petitioner returned to her home at some time in the early morning hours of April 23, 1983. Pate testified that upon his return, Petitioner went into the bathroom and ran the water. Petitioner, according to Pate's testimony, then stated that he wanted a cigarette and that he was going to go to his sister's nearby apartment to get one. Pate testified that Petitioner returned to her apartment after a couple of minutes at which time she turned on a light and discovered that Petitioner was wearing her pants. Pate testified that Petitioner then told her that he had just killed Kay Burns and that he had cut her throat and heart out. Petitioner stated to Pate that he had gone to the hospital, met Ms. Burns, pretended that he had cocaine, went with Ms. Burns to her house, took his coat off, and cut Ms. Burns' throat while she was in the kitchen. Pate testified that Petitioner stated that Ms. Burns' boyfriend had seen him leaving the apartment and that he had killed Ms. Burns because she was trying to get his brother fired from his job at Methodist and because of cocaine and a gang named the Disciples. Petitioner then told Pate that he had burned his blue baggy pants in the incinerator.

Pate testified that she never again saw the white shirt Petitioner was wearing when he left her apartment on April 22, 1983. In addition, Pate testified that Petitioner regularly carried with him a steak knife owned by Pate which had a wooden, black/brown handle and a smooth blade. Pate testified that she had not seen her knife since April 22, 1983. Pate also testified that the knife discovered in the field close to Ms. Burns' apartment looked similar to her knife except that the handle on her knife was darker, her knife was sharp, and a piece was not missing from her...

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4 cases
  • Miller v. Commissioner of Correction
    • United States
    • Connecticut Supreme Court
    • August 26, 1997
    ... ... See, e.g., Enoch v. Gramley, 861 F.Supp. 718, 730 (C.D.Ill.1994), aff'd, 70 F.3d 1490 (7th Cir.1995), cert. denied, ... ...
  • Date v. Schriro
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Arizona
    • November 26, 2008
    ...not yet addressed whether such evidence was admissible, and there was a split of authority in the federal courts); Enoch v. Gramley, 861 F.Supp. 718, 747-48 (C.D.Ill.1994) (counsel's mistaken interpretation of state law not so unreasonable as to constitute Sixth Amendment violation even whe......
  • Perry v. Norris, PB-C-83-275.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Eastern District of Arkansas
    • March 3, 1995
    ...v. Collins, 988 F.2d 11, 12-13 (5th Cir.), cert. denied, ___ U.S. ___, 113 S.Ct. 1630, ___ L.Ed.2d ___ (1993); Enoch v. Gramley, 861 F.Supp. 718, 734-37 (C.D.Ill.1994), it is not inconsistent with the Supreme Court's Herrera decision. See 506 U.S. at ___, 113 S.Ct. at 856 (requiring a "trul......
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    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Northern District of Illinois
    • January 24, 2001
    ...because she should not have been convicted, she is not actually innocent of the crime with which she was charged. See Enoch v. Gramley, 861 F.Supp. 718, 729 (N.D.Ill.1994) (citing Sawyer v. Whitley, 505 U.S. 333, 339, 112 S.Ct. 2514, 120 L.Ed.2d 269 (1992)). predict that the Seventh Circuit......

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