Cases Pending, edited by Gretchen Harris Sperry and Catherine Basque Weiler, has been updated to discuss the Illinois Supreme Court’s September Term, which begins Monday, September 11, 2017, with oral arguments scheduled for September 12, 13, 14, 19 and 20, 2017. A total of 16 cases will be heard – 9 criminal and 7 civil. The following criminal cases are scheduled for argument this Term:
In re Benny M.—No. 120133—September
People v. Salimah Cole (In
re Amy Campanelli)—No. 120997—September 12
People v. Walter Relerford—No.
People v. Kevin Hunter
& Drashun Wilson—Nos. 121306 & 121345, cons.—September 12
People v. Michael Brooks—No.
People v. Julio Chairez—No.
People v. Antoine Hardman—No.
People v. Anthony Brown—No.
People v. Jared Staake—No.
Below is a summary for one of the criminal cases. Summaries for these cases and others pending with the Illinois Supreme Court can be found in our Cases Pending publication, accessible to ALA members on the ALA's website.
People v. Michael Brooks
Defendant Michael Brooks
was involved in a single-vehicle motorcycle accident around midnight on a
summer evening in 2014. When ambulance
personnel and police arrived at the scene, they determined that Brooks appeared
to be intoxicated and appeared to have a serious injury, a visibly broken
foot. Brooks stated that he did not want
medical treatment, but ambulance personnel insisted that he needed medical
treatment and requested police assistance.
A police officer compelled Brooks onto a gurney and into an ambulance,
later handcuffing him to a gurney inside the ambulance when he tried to exit
the moving vehicle. At the hospital,
Brooks always objected to having his blood tested, but he stayed for twelve
hours to receive treatment. The police
officer left after citing him for DUI without talking to any medical
personnel. Brooks later moved to
suppress blood testing results on Fourth Amendment grounds, and the State
asserted that the Fourth Amendment did not apply because there was no State
action involved in the blood testing.
The circuit and appellate
courts agreed that the suppression motion should be granted. The courts cited the police involvement in
compelling Brooks to go to the hospital for treatment against his will as the
State action triggering application of the Fourth Amendment's warrant
Before the supreme court,
the State asserts that the lower courts erred by failing to apply the
burden-shifting framework applicable to suppression hearings under which
defendant bears the burden of making a prima facie case of a Fourth Amendment
violation before the burden shifts to the State to counter that case. Under that framework, defendant did not make
a prima facie case because he offered no evidence to show a blood test occurred
or, if so, to show who conducted the blood test (or why). Even if a hospital blood test is assumed to
have been conducted by hospital personnel, defendant offered no evidence to
show that the blood tester should be considered a State agent. There is no evidence that the blood tester
decided to conduct the test in any way shaped by a law enforcement purpose
(rather than testing for purely medical reasons). Alternatively, even if a prima facie case
were made, the circuit court erred by granting the motion before expressly
shifting the burden to the State to present contrary evidence. Brooks responds that the blood test would not
have happened but for police involvement in compelling him to go to the
hospital for treatment, and that he never consented to the testing. This police involvement should be deemed to
be the requisite State action triggering the Fourth Amendment warrant
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