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Kenyatta Brown

Other Cook County, Illinois exonerations with no crime
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On May 19, 2003, 21-year-old Kenyatta Brown was arrested in Chicago, Illinois and charged with aggravated unlawful use of a firearm.

On August 22, 2003, Brown pled guilty in Cook County Circuit Court and was sentenced to three years in prison.

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

In 2021, Brown filed a motion to vacate the conviction based on the Aguilar ruling. After the motion was granted, the conviction on the gun charge was vacated, and the case was dismissed. By that time, Brown was serving a 120-year-prison term imposed after he was convicted of a 2007 shooting that killed a man and injured a woman.

On February 28, 2022, Brown was granted a certificate of innocence. In July 2022, the Illinois Court of Claims awarded Brown $9,500 in compensation.

– Maurice Possley

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Posting Date: 10/31/2022
Last Updated: 10/31/2022
State:Illinois
County:Cook
Most Serious Crime:Weapon Possession or Sale
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:2003
Convicted:2003
Exonerated:2022
Sentence:3 years
Race/Ethnicity:Black
Sex:Male
Age at the date of reported crime:21
Contributing Factors:
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No