People v. Lambert

Decision Date27 August 1993
Docket NumberNo. 3-92-0770,3-92-0770
Citation249 Ill.App.3d 726,619 N.E.2d 534,188 Ill.Dec. 909
Parties, 188 Ill.Dec. 909 The PEOPLE of the State of Illinois, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. James W. LAMBERT, Defendant-Appellant.
CourtUnited States Appellate Court of Illinois

Robert H. Jones, Robert H. Jones, Ltd., Peoria, for James W. Lambert.

John X. Breslin, Deputy Director, State's Attys. Appellate Prosecutor, Ottawa, Erik

I. Blanc, State's Atty., Pekin, Robert M. Hansen, State's Attys. Appellate Prosecutor, Ottawa, for the People.

Justice BARRY delivered the opinion of the court.

The defendant, James W. Lambert, was indicted for the Class 4 felony of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) (Ill.Rev.Stat.1991, ch. 95 1/2, par. 11-501(d)(1)). Thereafter, a jury found him guilty of that offense, and he was subsequently sentenced to 30 months of probation, 3 months of periodic imprisonment, and a fine of $1,000. He appeals, and we affirm.

The record shows that the State indicted the defendant pursuant to section 11-501(d)(1) of the Illinois Vehicle Code (Code) (Ill.Rev.Stat.1991, ch. 95 1/2, par. 11-501(d)(1)). That section states that every person convicted of committing a DUI shall be guilty of a Class 4 felony if the person had committed two previous DUI offenses. Here, the record shows that the defendant was found guilty of DUI in 1974 and 1985.

On appeal, the defendant first contends that the indictment was insufficient because it failed to give him adequate notice. Specifically, he alleges that the indictment was defective because it did not set out the dates or locations of the prior DUI offenses. We disagree.

A charge shall be in writing and allege the commission of an offense by: (1) stating the name of the offense; (2) citing the statutory provision alleged to have been violated; (3) setting forth the nature and elements of the offense charged; (4) stating the date and count of the offense as definitely as can be done; and (5) stating the name of the accused. (Ill.Rev.Stat.1991, ch. 38, par. 111-3(a).) In addition, when the State seeks an enhanced sentence because of a prior conviction, the charge shall also state the intention to seek an enhanced sentence and shall state such prior conviction so as to give notice to the defendant. However, the fact of such prior conviction and the State's intention to seek an enhanced sentence are not elements of the offense and may not be disclosed to the jury during trial unless otherwise permitted by issues properly raised during the trial. Ill.Rev.Stat.1991, ch. 38, par. 111-3(c).

In the case at hand, the indictment stated that "James W. Lambert committed the offense of driving under the influence of alcohol (Class 4 felony) in that said Defendant(s) drove a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, said Defendant having committed a violation of Illinois Revised Statutes, Chapter 95 1/2, Section 11-501(a), for the third or subsequent time, in violation of Illinois Revised Statutes, Chapter 95 1/2, Section 11-501(d)(1)." The record also shows that the defendant was provided in discovery with a copy of his driver's abstract. The abstract showed that the defendant was found guilty of DUI on May 24, 1974, and on February 19, 1985. The defendant completed court supervision for the 1985 adjudication.

Based on the above evidence, we find that the defendant received sufficient notice regarding the State's intent to use the defendant's prior DUI offenses to establish that he had committed a Class 4 felony. We therefore reject the defendant's contention that the indictment gave him insufficient notice.

In addition, we note that the indictment's failure to list the locations and dates of the prior DUI offenses did not impair the defendant's preparation of his defense since the elements of a Class 4 felony DUI are the same as a Class A misdemeanor DUI. (See Ill.Rev.Stat.1991, ch. 95 1/2, par. 11-501(c).). Here, the prior offenses are not elements of a DUI charge and are used solely for sentencing purposes after the defendant is found guilty of DUI. As such, since the prior DUI offenses were irrelevant to his trial preparation, the defendant cannot claim he was prejudiced by the State's failure to include detailed information in the indictment regarding the prior convictions.

The defendant next argues that he could not be convicted of felony DUI because he had only one prior DUI conviction. He notes that section 11-501(d)(1) of the Code provides that every person convicted of committing a DUI shall be guilty of a Class 4 felony if "such person committed" the DUI for the third or subsequent time. (Ill.Rev.Stat.1991, ch. 95 1/2, par. 11-501(d)(1).) He further notes that the 1985 incident resulted in his receiving and completing court supervision. He contends that supervision is not a conviction but is similar to a continuance in that if a defendant exhibits good conduct during the supervision, the charges may be dismissed and the record of the proceedings expunged. Therefore, he concludes that since he was not convicted of a DUI in 1985 it cannot be said that he committed a second DUI.

In response, the State argues that felony DUI does not require two prior DUI convictions because the term "committed" is not the same as a conviction. In support of its argument, the State notes that a defendant can only receive supervision if he...

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6 cases
  • People v. Sheehan
    • United States
    • Illinois Supreme Court
    • December 21, 1995
    ...resulting in unexpunged order of supervision to be used as automatic enhancing offense); People v. Lambert (3d Dist.1993), 249 Ill.App.3d 726, 729-30, 188 Ill.Dec. 909, 619 N.E.2d 534 (term "committed" as used in felony DUI statute unambiguous and permits use of prior DUI offenses resulting......
  • People v. Laskowski
    • United States
    • United States Appellate Court of Illinois
    • April 4, 1997
    ...People v. Tinkham, 266 Ill.App.3d 391, 396, 203 Ill.Dec. 358, 361, 639 N.E.2d 917, 920 (1994); People v. Lambert, 249 Ill.App.3d 726, 729-30, 188 Ill.Dec. 909, 911, 619 N.E.2d 534, 536 (1993); People v. Winkler, 248 Ill.App.3d 954, 957, 188 Ill.Dec. 91, 92-93, 618 N.E.2d 661, 662-63 (1993).......
  • People v. Sheehan
    • United States
    • United States Appellate Court of Illinois
    • April 26, 1994
    ...of legislative intent. The Appellate Court, Third District, reached a decision similar to Winkler in People v. Lambert (1993), 249 Ill.App.3d 726, 188 Ill.Dec. 909, 619 N.E.2d 534. In support of its holding of nonambiguity, the court quoted the floor debate comments of Representative Culler......
  • People v. Tinkham
    • United States
    • United States Appellate Court of Illinois
    • August 23, 1994
    ... ... These cases are People v. Winkler (1993), 248 Ill.App.3d 954, 188 Ill.Dec. 91, 618 N.E.2d 661, People v. Lambert (1993), 249 Ill.App.3d 726, 188 Ill.Dec. 909, 619 N.E.2d 534, and People v. Sheehan (1994), 261 Ill.App.3d 325, 198 Ill.Dec. 689, 633 N.E.2d 151. We agree with the decisions in the first two of those cases and with part of the analysis in the last case ...         The Winkler court ... ...
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