sentence, and with the other end of the continuum comprising persons who did commit the criminal conduct of which they were convicted but whose convictions were not proper for "technical reasons" such as the trial court's receipt of improperly obtained evidence (Tr. 641-45, 653-54).
127. Dr. Metzner limited his definition of what constitutes "adverse psychological reactions" to include only those psychological reactions that would rise to the level of a diagnosable "mental disorder" (Tr. 648, 652). Although he conceded that other members of the class would feel distress and experience anxiety relating to the delays in the appellate process, he repeated that those reactions would not result in a "mental disorder" (Tr. 644). Thus Dr. Metzner would exclude from the members of the class who are at an increased risk of suffering adverse psychological reactions those individuals, like Vernon Joy, who believe there were errors committed with respect to their convictions or sentences, who believe they are entitled to relief and who express distress and anxiety about the delays in resolving their appeals, but whose convictions are ultimately affirmed by the Appellate Court (Tr. 643-45).
128. Dr. Metzner conceded that, while it is clear that some class members are at an increased risk, at this stage it is not possible to identify what individuals among the petitioner class are or are not within Dr. Metzner's "small subset" of individuals who are at a higher risk of suffering mental disorders as a result of appellate delay (Tr. 654-56). Most critically as to Dr. Metzner's testimony, the criteria that he employed were directly at odds with those that have uniformly been utilized by court decisions in defining the prejudice caused by excessive appellate delays (see Conclusions 37 and 39).
3. Testimony of Class Members
a. Vernon Joy
129. Vernon Joy ("Joy") is incarcerated in the DOC following his June 1992 conviction for burglary in the Circuit Court of Cook County (Tr. 583-84). Joy was sentenced to three concurrent 10 year terms of incarceration (Tr. 584). Following his conviction Joy filed a post-trial motion challenging the validity of his conviction and sentence (Tr. 586, 592-93 and P. Ex. 98). After the denial of his post-trial motion, Joy filed a timely notice of appeal (Tr. 587-88).
130. On August 4, 1992 Joy was advised that First District had been assigned to represent him in his appeal (Tr. 589-90 and P. Ex. 45). Attached to the letter was an information sheet explaining the procedures that First District would follow in handling Joy's appeal and containing timetables setting forth the approximate length of time the appellate process could be expected to take (id.), advising Joy in part that it would take approximately eight to ten months before First District would receive a complete record of proceedings in his case (P. Ex. 45).
131. On August 30, 2992 Joy wrote a letter to First District paralegal Susan Carr ("Carr"), advising her that the transcript of the proceedings in his case had already been delivered to First District and therefore requesting that an attorney be assigned immediately to represent him (Tr. 595-96 and P. Ex. 99). On September 14, 1992 Joy wrote another letter to Carr, attaching a copy of his post-trial motion and offering to assist the office in drafting his brief in order to speed up the process (Tr. 592-93 and P. Ex. 98).
132. Joy was thereafter advised that due to First District's backlog of unbriefed cases no lawyer could begin to work on his appeal for 20 months (Tr. 593-94). On October 5, 1992, at Joy's direction Pelletier filed a motion to withdraw as counsel in Joy's case, requesting the appointment of other counsel to represent Joy (Tr. 596-97 and P. Ex. 42). In part Pelletier's motion advised the Appellate Court that due to the backlog of unbriefed cases in the office and the underfunding of attorney positions, First District would be unable to process Joy's appeal in a reasonably timely manner (id.). On October 15, 1992 the Appellate Court denied the motion without prejudice (Tr. 597-98 and P. Ex. 43).
133. First District filed a number of motions for extension of time to file Joy's brief (Tr. 601-02). At no time did Joy authorize the filing of such motions on his behalf (id.).
134. On February 1, 1993 Pelletier advised Joy by letter that "with our present staff it could be approximately two years before we could file your original brief" (P. Ex. 46 and Tr. 158-59, 599). That letter further advised that First District would attempt to take steps to reduce the delay by transferring cases to other district offices, filing additional motions to withdraw as counsel and working to recruit lawyers to handle appeals on a pro bono basis (P. Ex. 46). Joy strenuously objected to the delay in completing his brief and expressed his displeasure to Pelletier (Tr. 600).
135. On March 11, 1993, with Joy's consent Pelletier filed a second motion to withdraw as counsel and for the appointment of private counsel to handle Joy's appeal (Tr. 600-01 and P. Ex. 47). As with the first motion to withdraw, Pelletier cited as reasons the reduced funding to his office and the tremendous backlog of unbriefed cases. As with the first motion to withdraw, on March 17, 1993 the First Appellate District denied the motion (Tr. 601 and P. Ex. 48). On March 28, 1993 Pelletier wrote Joy that it could still be "approximately 20 months before the original brief in your case is filed" (Tr. 602 and P. Ex. 49).
136. On July 8, 1993 Joy wrote Pelletier expressing his concern and frustration over the delay in filing the brief in his behalf (Tr. 602-07 and P. Ex. 102);
Mr. Pelletier since I have been locked up this year alone, I've gone through some things that I wouldn't wish on a damn dog, let alone a human being....But wait, there's more!
My briefs were supposed to be filed over a year ago, but to this date still "NO" filed brief. I occasionally try to call my lawyer whom, I might add, told me and I quote "Know that you will not be abandoned. At all times you will be represented by counsel. Our hope your right to counsel on appeal is a meaningful one."