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Dontaneous Salley

Other Cook County, Illinois exonerations
On December 28, 2007, Chicago police arrested 19-year-old Dontaneous Salley and charged him with aggravated unlawful use of a firearm.

On April 10, 2008, Salley pled guilty to the charge in Cook County Circuit Court. He was sentenced to one year in prison.

In September 2013, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled in People v. Aguilar that the portion of the statute under which Salley had been convicted was unconstitutional. The statute said that a person committed the offense of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon when a person “carries on or about his person or in any vehicle or concealed on or about his person except when on his land or in his abode or fixed place of business any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm and the firearm is uncased, loaded and immediately accessible.”

The court held that portion of the statute violated the right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

In 2020, Salley filed a petition seeking to vacate his conviction. The petition was granted and on October 2, 2020, Cook County Circuit Court Criminal Division Presiding Judge Leroy Martin Jr. granted Salley a certificate of innocence.

Salley then filed a claim with the Illinois Court of Claims seeking compensation. In February 2021, Salley was awarded $30,000.

– Maurice Possley

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Posting Date: 12/17/2021
Last Updated: 12/17/2021
Most Serious Crime:Weapon Possession or Sale
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:2007
Sentence:1 year
Age at the date of reported crime:19
Contributing Factors:
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No