Is Dismissing Criminal Charges Against a Defendant Who Was Not Given An Occurred Date of the Crime Justified ?

In People v. Burton, 201 Ill. App. 3d 116, 123, 558 N.E.2d 1369, 146 Ill. Dec. 1035 (1990), the defendant was charged with sexual abuse offenses of two girls under 13 years of age. The defendant challenged the State's claim that it could provide no more specific information other than that the offense of aggravated criminal sexual assault occurred sometime between January 1986 and September 1988. The defendant argued that the 33-month range made it impossible for him to defend. The court held that the fact the defendant suffered some prejudice, without more, did not justify dismissing the charges against him, particularly where the children are the alleged victims of sex abuse. Burton, 201 Ill. App. 3d at 123. The reviewing court further held that the trial court did not err in denying the defendant's motion to dismiss the count in question where the crime occurred within the applicable statute of limitations period and the State provided the defendant with the best information it had regarding when the offenses occurred. Burton, 201 Ill. App. 3d at 122-23.