March 31, 2008
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, ) Appeal from the
) Circuit Court of
Plaintiff-Appellee, ) Cook County, Illinois.
v. ) No. 04 CR 17227
RAUL TIJERINA, ) Honorable Stanley J. Sacks,
) Judge Presiding.
JUSTICE MURPHY delivered the opinion of the court:
Following a jury trial, defendant, Raul Tijerina, was convicted of first degree murder (720
ILCS 5/9-1(a)(1) (West 2004)) and intentional homicide of an unborn child (720 ILCS 5/9-
1.2(a)(1) (West 2004)) for the July 9, 2000, death of Sonya Garcia. At the time of her death,
Garcia was 14 years old, approximately 8 months pregnant, and residing with defendant. The trial
court sentenced defendant to 60 years’ imprisonment for first degree murder and a consecutive 40
years’ imprisonment for the intentional homicide of an unborn child pursuant to sections 5-8-
1(a)(1)(a) and 5-8-4(a)(i) of the Unified Code of Corrections (730 ILCS 5/5-8-1(a)(1)(a), 5-8-
4(a)(i) (West 2004)).
On appeal, defendant argues five issues. Defendant claims that the trial court erred in
failing to instruct the jury on involuntary manslaughter and second degree murder based on
provocation. Defendant contends that he was denied a fair trial because of prosecutorial
misconduct during the State’s rebuttal argument. Defendant asserts that the State improperly