The following cases were heard on September 25th, 2023:
Joseph Auman: Defendant present in person and in custody with PD Herkert, who is appointed to represent Defendant for the entirety of this case by agreement. State's Attorney Present. Defendant admonished regarding charges and possible penalties and the petition to detain. State tendered a proffer over the weekend which the Court reviewed and found probable cause for the initial detention of Defendant. Defendant objects to the petition to deny pretrial release in its present form because it does not allege specific facts upon which it is based. State granted leave to file amended petition to comply with 725 ILCS 5/100-6.1(d)(1) by 10 a.m on 9/26/23. State has tendered all required information to Defendant in its possession, but has not tendered witness statements still in possession of the police. State ordered to tender remaining and required information by 9/25/23 at 4 p.m. State makes a motion to continue hearing on the petition to deny pretrial release. Motion granted for reasons stated on the record. Hearing on that petition and preliminary hearing continued to 9/26/23 at 1 p.m.
Ashley Bain: Defendant present in person and in custody with Public defender and State's Attorney present. Case called for first appearance with counsel, preliminary hearing, and hearing on State's petition to deny pretrial release, and pretrial release conditions. Chief Wheeler sworn and testifies. Arguments heard. For reasons stated on the record, the court finds probable cause, but does not find that the State has met its burden of proof with respect to the petition to deny pretrial release. The court does find that statutory and additional conditions of release are appropriate for reasons stated on the record. Pretrial release order and home detention order entered. See written orders. Defendant has a parole warrant and will be taken into custody by the Department of Corrections today. In person writ to issue or all hearings. Defendant waives arraignment, pleads not guilty, and demands trial by jury. Pretrial hearing scheduled for 10/30/23 at 10 a.m. Final pretrial hearing scheduled for 11/21/23 at 1:15 p.m. Jury trial scheduled for 12/04/23 at 8:30 a.m.
Joshua Bland: Defendant present in custody and in person with Assistant PD Grigsby and State's Attorney present. Case called for hearing on all pending motions. The State filed a petition for detention under 725 ILCS 5/110-6.1 and a petition for revocation and/or petition for sanctions pursuant to 725 ILCS 5/110-6. Defendant filed a motion to strike the State's motion. Defendant filed a motion to remove monetary conditions of bail pursuant to 725 ILCS 5/110-7.5(b) and 725 ILCS
The State withdraws its petition for detention. Regarding the motion to strike the petition for revocation of pretrial release or petition for sanctions, 725 ILCS 5/110-6 provides that if a defendant has been granted pretrial release under this section and violates any conditions of release, the State may file a petition to revoke pretrial release or for sanctions, depending on the charge and the alleged violation. Since defendant is in custody on a bond and has not been released, defendant claims the State cannot seek revocation or sanctions.
The legislature passed a trailer bill adding 725 ILCS 5/110-7.5 to address retroactive application of the Pretrial Fairness Act to defendants who were in custody and had not posted cash bond when the law took effect on September 18, 2023. Section 110-7.5(a) states [t]his Section shall not limit the State's Attorney's ability to file a verified petition for detention under Section 110-6.1 or a petition for revocation or sanctions under Section 110-6. The State argues this language permits it to file detention or sanction petitions even though defendant has already appeared before a judge and has not been released from custody. The plain language of these statutes read together clearly permits
the State to file a petition for revocation or sanctions, as long as they comply with 725 ILCS 5/110-6 and 725 ILCS 5/110-6.1. Since Defendant has not been released under 725 ILCS 5/110-6, the State's petitions for for revocation is not timely. Defendant's motion to strike that petition is granted.
Regarding Defendant's motion motion to remove monetary conditions of bail pursuant to 725 ILCS 5/110-7.5(b) and 725 ILCS 5/110-5(e), Defendant focuses on paragraph one of section 7.5(b) which states [o]n or after January 1, 2023, any person who remains in pretrial detention after having been ordered released with pretrial conditions, including the condition of depositing security, shall be entitled to a hearing under subsection (e) of Section 110-5. Section 110-5(e) entitles defendant to a hearing within 48 hours of the filing of a petition to reconsider pretrial release conditions and requires the court to remove any release conditions a defendant cannot satisfy for financial reasons which would include posting cash bond.
Essentially, Defendant claims he cannot afford to post cash bond and therefore, pursuant to section 110-5(e), the Court must release him from custody after a hearing within 48 hours of filing the motion to reconsider. Further, since Defendant's motion to strike the detention and sanction petitions was granted, Defendant claims he must be released without the possibility of further detention and without any further modification of release conditions or sanctions. The crux of Defendant' position is then that within 48 hours of the filing of a petition to reconsider pretrial release conditions, all defendants in custody with a cash bond on September 18, 2023, must be released from custody regardless of whether the offense is detainable under the PFA. Paragraph 2 of section 110-7.5(b) provides in pertinent part that [o]n or after January 1, 2023, any person, not subject to subsection (b), who remains in pretrial detention and is eligible for detention under Section 110-6.1 shall be entitled to a hearing according to the following schedule . . . (emphasis added). The schedule grants defendant a hearing within: 90 days of the filing of a motion for reconsideration of pretrial release conditions if charged with an offense under paragraphs (1) through (7) of subsection (a) of Section 110-6.1; 60 days of the filing of a motion for reconsideration of pretrial release conditions if charged with an offense under paragraph (8) of subsection (a) of Section 110-6.1; and 7 days all other offenses not listed in subsection (a) of Section 110-6.1.
Defendant claims paragraph 2 of section 110-7.5 does not apply because defendant is subject to subsection (b), paragraph one, and is therefore, entitled to a hearing within 48 hours of the filing of a motion for reconsideration of pretrial release conditions. The Court must construe section 110-7.5 to determine the legislative intent regarding application of the PFA to defendants in custody with cash bonds on September 18, 2023.
The cardinal rule in interpreting a statute is to give effect to the intent of the legislature. The language of the statute is the best and most reliable indicator of the legislature's intent. Where the language is plain and unambiguous, this Court must not read into it exceptions, limitations, or other conditions. However, where the statutory language is ambiguous, the Court may look beyond the language and resort to further aids of statutory construction. People v. Fort, 2017 IL 118966, 20, 88 N.E.3d 718, 72324. In addition to examining the statutory language, the Court may discern legislative intent by considering the purpose and necessity for the law, the evils sought to be remedied, and goals to be achieved. People ex rel. Sherman v. Cryns, 203 Ill.2d 264, 280, 271 Ill.Dec. 881, 786 N.E.2d 139 (2003). Legislative intent can be ascertained from a consideration of the entire Act, its nature, its object and the consequences that would result from construing it one way or the other.' Fumarolo v. Chicago Board of Education, 142 Ill.2d 54, 96, 153 Ill.Dec. 177, 566 N.E.2d 1283 (1990)). Throughout this process, this Court presumes that the legislature did not intend absurdity, inconvenience, or injustice. Id. People v. Fort, 2017 IL 118966, 20, 88 N.E.3d 718, 72324.
The Court determines section 110-7.5(b) is not plain and unambiguous, and therefore, this Court can consider other aids of statutory construction beyond the statutory language. Paragraph 2 of section 110-7.5(b) is clearly ambiguous, as it only purports to apply to defendants that are not subject to subsection (b). Yet, that language is also part of subsection (b). Construing section 110-7.5(b) as Defendant argues would essentially render paragraph 2 of section 110-7.5(b) meaningless, as it would only apply to defendants being held without bond. If that was the legislative intent, why create a schedule for hearing motions to reconsider conditions of pretrial release based upon the type of offense and whether is was detainable? The Court cannot fathom a scenario where a defendant charged with a non-detainable offense would ever be held without bond. Considering the purpose and necessity for the law, the evils sought to be remedied, and goals to be achieved it is clear the legislature intended to set a schedule to hear these motions to reconsider based upon whether the offense charged was detainable or not. The overall goal of the PFA was to detain defendants who pose a danger to the community or others or who are a danger of willful flight from prosecution and release those who did not meet those criteria.
Reading this section as defendant argues would frustrate the legislative intent and effectively release all defendants in custody who could not afford to post bond within 48 hours of the filing of a motion to reconsider pretrial release conditions regardless of the seriousness of the offense and whether the defendant was subject to detention. Such an interpretation would produce absurd and unjust results and would further violate the legislative goal of protecting the community. For example, if a defendant was charged with murder on September 17, 2023, and was granted pretrial release subject to the posting of cash bond, and the defendant filed a motion to reconsider pretrial release conditions on September 18, 2023, the Court would have to hold a hearing on that motion by September 20, 2023, and if the defendant proved he was financially unable to post bond, the
Court would be obligated to release the defendant from custody without even being subject to a detention petition. Whereas a defendant charged with murder on September 18, 2023, would be subject to a detention petition, and if detained could not be released before being in custody for 90 days. Clearly, the legislature did not intend such an absurd result.
The Court's interpretation is also more in line with the legislative intent as expressed in 725 ILCS 5/110-6.1(f) which requires all detained defendants to be brought to trial within 90 days of the
entry of the detention order or they would have to be released from detention. The Court's interpretation would require defendants in custody who are subjection section 110-7.5 also be tried within 90 days of the filing of the motion to modify pretrial release
conditions or be released from custody. In summary, the Court determines that 725 ILCS 5/110-7.5(b) requires the court to hold a hearing on defendant's motion to modify pretrial release conditions in accordance with the schedule set forth in paragraph 2 of that section. Since defendant is not being held on a detainable offense, he is entitled to a hearing on his pending motion to remove monetary conditions of bail within 7 days. 725 ILCS 5/110-5(e) motion to reconsider pretrial release conditions hearing conducted. For reasons stated on the record, the Court finds defendant remains in detention solely because he cannot afford to post cash bond. As such, the condition of cash bond is stricken. The Court finds other conditions of release appropriate for reasons stated on the record. See written order. Treatment court referral remains pending and will be staffed this week. State objects to treatment court. Pretrial hearing set 10/5/23 at 10 a.m. Parties admonsihed on appeal rights.
Patricia Hornbuckle: Special Prosecutor Mathis for the People; Defendant present in open court with Attorney Erickson. Proceed on Preliminary hearing; State calls TPD Detective Christopher Adams who is sworn and testifies. Court subjects witness to cross-examination; Court finds probable cause exist to hold Defendant over for trial. Defendant waives Formal Arraignment and enters a plea of not guilty and jury trial demand. Matter reset for Pretrial Hearing only on 11/27/23 at 11:30 a.m. Petition to modify Bail Bond granted; Defendant can leave State for purposes of travel without further order of Court.
Ace Kobe: Defendant present with Public Defender and State's Attorney present. Defendant knowingly and voluntarily waives preliminary hearing. See written waiver to follow. Defendant waives arraignment, pleads not guilty, and demands trial by jury. Pretrial hearing scheduled for 11/03/23 at 10 a.m. State to make plea offer and answer discovery.