Can a Petition Be Granted at the Second Stage of Postconviction Proceedings ?

People v. Wheeler, 392 Ill. App. 3d 303, 311, 912 N.E.2d 681, 332 Ill. Dec. 194 (2009), discussed the ability of a defendant to produce evidence concerning a lack of culpable negligence in the late discovery and filing of a claim, clarifying that such matters are best addressed at the third stage of postconviction proceedings. In Wheeler, the defendant filed a late postconviction petition and presented affidavits stating that he discovered his claim late because of transfers between prisons, a period of isolated confinement, and a period of prison lockdown that severely limited his access to legal materials. He also averred that the clerk of the trial court did not respond to his request for a transcript of a trial court proceeding. Wheeler, 392 Ill. App. 3d at 304-05. The trial court granted the petition at the second stage of the postconviction proceedings, and the State appealed.