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Ideary Mooney

Other Illinois Exonerations for Weapon Possession or Sale
https://www.law.umich.edu/special/exoneration/PublishingImages/Cook_County_seal.jpg
The first time Ideary Mooney was arrested by Chicago police on a charge of aggravated unlawful use of a firearm was on May 20, 2009. On June 29, 2009, Mooney, then 33 years old, pled guilty in Cook County Circuit Court and was sentenced to three years in prison.

He was released from prison on June 4, 2010, and four months later, on August 16, 2010, he was arrested once more by Chicago police. He was charged with aggravated unlawful use of a firearm. On September 22, 2010, Mooney pled guilty in Cook County Circuit Court. He was sentenced to four years in prison. He was released on parole on August 16, 2012.

In September 2013, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled in People v. Aguilar that the portion of the statute under which Mooney had been convicted both times 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 this portion of the statute violated the right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

In 2014, Mooney was charged with attempted murder for shooting a man six times during a party in a barbershop on Chicago’s South Side. He was convicted and sentenced to 34 years in prison.

In 2020, the Illinois Appellate Court, acting on a motion filed by Mooney without a lawyer, vacated Mooney’s 2009 case based on the Aguilar ruling. Subsequently, attorney Joel Flaxman began representing Mooney and filed a motion to vacate the 2010 weapons conviction. After that conviction was vacated, Flaxman filed a motion to obtain certificates of innocence on both of the weapons cases.

On September 10, 2021, Presiding Cook County Circuit Court Judge Erica Reddick granted Mooney certificates of innocence, clearing the way for him to seek compensation from the Illinois Court of Claims.

– Maurice Possley

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Posting Date: 3/21/2022
Last Updated: 3/21/2022
State:Illinois
County:Cook
Most Serious Crime:Weapon Possession or Sale
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:2010
Convicted:2010
Exonerated:2021
Sentence:4 years
Race/Ethnicity:Black
Sex:Male
Age at the date of reported crime:34
Contributing Factors:
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No