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September 9, 1997


Appeal from the Circuit Court of Kane County. No. 94--CF--800. Honorable Barry E. Puklin, Judge, Presiding.

Rehearing Denied September 30, 1997. Released for Publication September 30, 1997.

The Honorable Justice Bowman delivered the opinion of the court. Inglis and Hutchinson, JJ., concur.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Bowman

The Honorable Justice BOWMAN delivered the opinion of the court:

Defendant, Jeffrey Flynn, was charged with one count each of home invasion (720 ILCS 5/12--11 (West 1994)), residential burglary (720 ILCS 5/19--3(a) (West 1994)), and robbery (720 ILCS 5/18--1(a) (West 1994)) stemming from an incident on May 11, 1994, where Charles Loftus and Roger Schroeder (the complainants) encountered him in the bedroom of their apartment. The trial court directed a verdict as to the home invasion charge. The jury found defendant guilty of residential burglary and robbery. The trial court sentenced defendant to a term of 15 years' incarceration. Defendant now appeals his conviction. We affirm.


Defendant was indicted on May 24, 1994. On August 5, 1994, the trial court received a psychological consultation report about defendant from the Kane County Diagnostic Center. The report concluded that he was fit to stand trial, documented his diagnosis of paranoid type schizophrenia, and described his use of psychotropic medication. Immediately before trial began on January 23, 1995, defense counsel informed the trial court that defendant "is competent synthetically. He has Thorazine prescribed for him. The medicine *** has been revised to Stelazine."

At trial, Charles Loftus, the residential burglary complainant, testified that in May 1994 he lived in an apartment maintained by the Association for Individual Development (AID). He explained that he lived with Roger, whose last name Loftus could not recall, and Gary Scheckter. Loftus and Roger shared a bedroom in the apartment. Sometime early on the morning of May 11, 1994, he awoke suddenly and saw defendant, wearing "a cap and an overcoat," standing in the bedroom. Loftus turned on the light in the bedroom after he awoke. After he saw defendant, defendant went over to Roger'sbed and "wrestled with him." At that point, Loftus saw defendant reach into Roger's pocket. He thought defendant "pulled out money." While Loftus did not see anything in defendant's hand, he "heard" that defendant had taken $14. After the struggle with Roger ended, defendant left the apartment. Later that morning, Loftus identified defendant's picture in a photographic lineup. Loftus identified the defendant in court as the person he saw when he awoke on the morning of May 11, 1994.

On cross-examination, Loftus admitted that he told investigating officers that when he awoke he saw a "man in the closet." However, Loftus testified at trial that the man in his bedroom "didn't touch the closet." He further explained that when he turned on the light in the bedroom Roger was awake. The man he saw in the bedroom on May 11 wore a dark brown "20's style" cap and a black knee-length overcoat. Loftus thought that the man hit Roger in the stomach during their bedroom struggle.

Roger Schroeder, the robbery complainant, testified that in May 1994 he lived with Charles Loftus and Gary Scheckter. On the morning of May 11, 1994, Schroeder heard his bedroom door open and a man entered his room and looked in the closet. The man then approached Schroeder and asked him, "Do you have any money[?]" The man held Schroeder down on his bed and Schroeder gave him 16 cents. The intruder put the money in his pocket and then left the room. At the time of the occurrence, the bedroom light was not on but the room was "fairly well lit" by a light from the parking lot. When asked by the prosecutor, Schroeder was unable to identify defendant in court as the intruder.

On cross-examination, Schroeder explained that on May 10 he went to bed at about 11 p.m. and the intruder arrived sometime between 2:30 a.m. and 4 a.m. on May 11. According to Schroeder, the intruder carried a knife. Schroeder observed the intruder "going through" some pants in the closet. Schroeder stated that, at the time he was struggling with the intruder, Loftus was asleep. Schroeder denied that the intruder struck him in the stomach. According to Schroeder, the intruder was "wearing a tan corduroy coat with a *** brown fur collar" and was not wearing a hat. On redirect examination, Schroeder denied telling police officers that the intruder had stolen between $14 and $20.

Marja Huzevka testified that she is the clinical coordinator at AID. She is Loftus' counselor and meets with him once per week to work on his socialization skills, which were impaired by his long institutionalization. Huzevka also used to visit with Schroeder once per month until his departure from the AID program. Loftus andSchroeder used to share a bedroom at the AID facility, where they were taught self-care, housekeeping, money management, community integration, and social skills that they had lost during their illnesses. According to Huzevka, the only way that defendant would have had the authority to be inside the building would be if the complainants had consented to his presence. On cross-examination, Huzevka admitted that, based on her experience with Loftus, he demonstrates "some confusion at times about time periods." She also explained that she had been present for a conversation between Loftus and an assistant State's Attorney wherein Loftus stated that defendant had previously been in the apartment earlier on the night in question. On redirect examination, Huzevka stated that Loftus is "very specific about relating information *** about events."

Sergeant Nicholas Cornado of the Aurora police department testified that on the morning of May 11, 1994, he met with Loftus, Schroeder, and Huzevka because Loftus and Schroeder were signing complaints against defendant. Sergeant Cornado interviewed Loftus and Schroeder separately. Both complainants were shown photographic lineups; while Loftus identified defendant in a photograph, Schroeder was unable to make a positive identification.

During his interview, Schroeder described the intruder as a black male, but, because it was dark and he was not wearing his glasses at the time, Schroeder was unable to describe the intruder's height and weight. Schroeder told Sergeant Cornado that the intruder asked him for money while he was in bed. The intruder then "rummaged through the bedroom closet." After Loftus turned on the bedroom light, the intruder held down Schroeder, reached into his pocket, and removed some money. Schroeder told Sergeant Cornado that the intruder had removed $16 from his pocket. Sergeant Cornado did not recall Schroeder saying anything about the intruder carrying a knife. On cross-examination, Sergeant Cornado stated that Loftus explained that he did not know the intruder, but he told the police defendant's name because it was given to him by a caseworker.

Officer Nancy Joan Stefanski of the Aurora police department testified that she responded to the complainants' residence at 2:50 a.m. on May 11, 1994. Once there, Schroeder told her that an intruder had taken close to $20 from him.

Jayarama Naidu, a psychiatrist, treated both Loftus and Schroeder. The first time Loftus was evaluated, approximately one year before trial, he suffered from "major depression" and "borderline intellectual functioning." Loftus' depression consisted of "feeling down in the dumps," having no energy, not being able to concentrate, and not being able to take care of himself. Through the use of medication, Loftus stabilized his depression. His medications do not have side effects which would diminish his ability to perceive events around him or truthfully relate those events. Loftus' borderline intellectual functioning indicates that "his average IQ seems to be around high 70's and low 80's." As such, he can neither process data quickly nor engage in intelligent conversations. His condition, however, does not impact his ability to perceive and understand events. His memory and truthfulness are also unaffected by his condition. According to Dr. Naidu, Loftus' conditions do not affect "the main body of his memory, but because of the anxiety he might forget minor details." In Dr. Naidu's opinion, Loftus' perception of important events is magnified because of his anxiety and those events "make a greater impression on [his] memory."

Dr. Naidu also evaluated Schroeder. Schroeder experiences "dementia with Alzheimer Type." In addition to the memory problems associated with Alzheimer's disease, Schroeder also experiences an inability to care for himself. In May 1994, Schroeder was experiencing confusion and memory problems. Because of his Alzheimer's disease, "he really cannot remember anything at all *** he tends to make up stories *** to fill in the gaps." On cross-examination, Dr. Naidu further explained that Schroeder has impaired short- and long-term memory, abstract thinking, and judgment.

On redirect examination, Dr. Naidu stated that in May 1994 Loftus had been stable for more than a year and did not experience any depressive tendencies. Moreover, in May 1994, Loftus was not suffering from a diminished ability to concentrate, was not psychotic or demented, was not hearing voices or seeing things, and was not suffering from confabulation, a type of brain damage.

At the conclusion of Dr. Naidu's testimony, the State rested its case in chief. The trial court granted defendant's motion for a directed verdict as to the home invasion count and denied his motion for a directed verdict as to the remaining counts. Defendant then presented his case in chief.

Janice Lear, defendant's cousin, testified that defendant lived with her in May 1994. On the evening of May 10, 1994, defendant was "going in and out" of Lear's apartment while she watched a series of television programs, the last of which began at 1 a.m. on May 11, 1994. She and defendant went to sleep in the living room at approximately 1:30 a.m. Before retiring, Lear locked the door to her apartment; defendant did not have a key to the apartment. When she awoke later that morning, defendant was on the couch across from her. On cross-examination, Lear admitted that she had been convicted of forgery in 1990 and retail theft and deceptive Practicesin 1991. She further explained that it is a short ...

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