People v. Dick, 091619 ILCA2, 2-17-0391

Docket Nº:2-17-0391
Opinion Judge:BURKE JUSTICE
Party Name:THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. RICHARD L. DICK, Defendant-Appellant.
Judge Panel:JUSTICE BURKE delivered the judgment of the court. Justices Hutchinson and Schostok concurred in the judgment.
Case Date:September 16, 2019
Court:Court of Appeals of Illinois, Second District
 
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2017 IL App (2d) 170391-U

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, Plaintiff-Appellee,

v.

RICHARD L. DICK, Defendant-Appellant.

No. 2-17-0391

Court of Appeals of Illinois, Second District

September 16, 2019

This order was filed under Supreme Court Rule 23 and may not be cited as precedent by any party except in the limited circumstances allowed under Rule 23(e)(1).

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Du Page County. No. 00-DT-4850 Honorable Paul A. Marchese, Judge, Presiding.

JUSTICE BURKE delivered the judgment of the court. Justices Hutchinson and Schostok concurred in the judgment.

ORDER

BURKE JUSTICE

¶ 1 Held: The trial court properly rejected defendant's necessity instruction: necessity was not available as a defense to a strict-liability offense like DUI, defendant did not admit that he committed the offense, and in any event there was no evidence that defendant committed the offense to avert a greater danger.

¶ 2 Defendant, Richard L. Dick, appeals from his conviction in the circuit court of Du Page County of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) (625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(2) (West 2000)), contending that the trial court erred in refusing to instruct the jury on the necessity defense. Because defendant was not entitled to an instruction on the necessity defense, we affirm.

¶ 3 I. BACKGROUND

¶ 4 Defendant was charged by complaint with several traffic offenses, including DUI. The State nol-prossed all of the charges except DUI, and defendant opted for a jury trial.

¶ 5 Before trial, defendant submitted a proposed jury instruction on the necessity defense. See 720 ILCS 5/7-13 (West 2000). The trial court stated that it would rule on the instruction after the evidence was in.

¶ 6 The following facts were established at the trial. At about 7:49 p.m. on October 31, 2000, 1 Sergeant Michael Paup of the Itasca Police Department was on routine patrol. Sergeant Paup was dispatched to a homeless shelter in Itasca to investigate a report of someone driving under the influence.

¶ 7 When Sergeant Paup arrived, he saw a van in the parking lot with defendant in the driver's seat. A shelter employee told Sergeant Paup that the original driver had difficulty parking the van. That driver exited the van, and defendant backed up the van, bumping into the parking stall curb.

¶ 8 After speaking to the shelter employee, Sergeant Paup approached defendant. According to Sergeant Paup, defendant was wearing eyeglasses with only one lens. Defendant had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage, bloodshot eyes, and slurred speech. When Sergeant Paup asked defendant how much he had to drink, defendant answered "way too much." Sergeant Paup saw two beer bottles in the van and found a cap to one of the bottles in defendant's front pocket.

¶ 9 Sergeant Paup asked defendant to complete several field sobriety tests. When asked to recite...

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