Illinois Felon Found Not Guilty by Reason of Self Defense

Why I Am Suing The Governor of Virginia, iStock-1055138108
Illinois Felon Found Not Guilty by Reason of Self Defense iStock-1055138108

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- On 8 July, 2019, in Madison, Illinois, at about 7:40 pm, there was a confrontation between twin brothers and three other people.  The confrontation appears to have been between twin brothers Corion Mosley, and Torion Mosley, both 21 years old,  and at least three other people, two minors and an adult. The story has been covered extensively by reporter Scott Cousins of The Telegraph.

Both twins had felony convictions from 2016 for armed robbery, according to thetelegraph.com.  Torion Mosely faced a pending assault charge and an aggravated domestic battery charge. The two brothers faced a 21-year-old, unnamed adult, a 16-year-old minor, and 15-year-old Omarion Coleman, according to reports in bdn.com.

During the confrontation, Torion Mosely passed a handgun to Corion Mosely. Corion Mosely shot the three people confronting him, killing Omarion Coleman and wounding the other two.

The two brothers were charged with First Degree Murder, Attempted First Degree Murder, Aggravated Assault, and Possession of Weapons by a Felon.

Before the trial of Corion Mosely, his brother, Torion Mosely, had already plead guilty to lesser charges to obtain a six-year prison sentence. Corion Mosely decided on a jury trial.

Scott Cousins reports two versions of events were presented to the jury. The prosecution portrayed the shootings as payback for verbal disrespect; the defense claimed Corion reasonably considered himself under a deadly threat by a street gang.

In their closing arguments Thursday, attorneys painted different pictures of the incident.

Assistant Madison County State’s Attorney Luke Yager said Corion Mosley shot and killed Coleman for smarting off to him, then shot two other people. Defense attorney Patrick Ryan Dunn Sullivan said the two brothers were surrounded by a gang of hostile, possibly armed, youths and Corion Mosley shot them in self-defense.

Corion had spent two years in the County Jail awaiting trial, on a 1 million dollar bond. The jury found him not guilty.  From bdn.com:

A Madison County jury has found a 23-year-old laborer not guilty of first-degree murder in the 2019 shooting death of a teenager in Madison.

Corion Mosley had spent more than two years in the Madison County jail before his trial this week in Edwardsville. He walked out Thursday evening and went home to his family.

The case shows the disfunction in crime-ridden neighborhoods where there is limited trust in police. The Mosely brothers had felony convictions when they were about 18. When people are convicted of felonies at 18, they usually have numerous run-ins with the law as minors.

We do not know if the two people who were wounded and Omarion Coleman had police records. The two minors’ records are shielded by law. The adult man, 21-years-old, was not named. The unnamed man might have been legally able to own a firearm in Illinois. None was mentioned.

The point of this tale of dysfunction and woe is the jury saw the serious potential for self-defense.

The accused had previous felony convictions. The accused could not legally possess a firearm. The accused did not stay at the scene, attempt to preserve evidence, give aid, or contact the police. The accused fled the scene and hid from the police.

Yet the jury found reason to believe the shooting was self-defense. The defense is reported as claiming the crime scene was chaotic and poorly secured, allowing the potential for evidence to be removed.

Felons do not give up the right to self-defense. It is an inherent human right.

It has become unusual for criminal cases to go to trial. In previous times, jury trials were common. Plea bargains were unusual.

Perhaps those times are returning. Juries are not perfect. They can make mistakes. They are just better than most alternatives.

When a jury can find a convicted felon, who used an illegally possessed gun, not guilty in a muddy case, by reason of self-defense, it is an example of checks and balances, of the right to self-defense and to a jury trial.

It may be juries are becoming more skeptical of prosecutors. That could be a good thing.

I do not expect the Mosely twins to become great proponents of Constitutional Law. It is not the way to bet.

Respect for the right to self-defense is a positive thing for society. Several lessons are reinforced by the Mosley Twins’ example.

  • Avoid confrontations.
  • Support the rule of law.
  • Develop those habits early.

If you win the confrontation, and the trial, you can still lose. Two years in County lock-up is not fun.


About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of Constitutional Carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

Dean Weingarten

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Mack
Mack
27 days ago

A simple rule:

May the ex-felon exercise the Franchise – the right to vote?

If yes, then the ex-felon should also have the RKBA.

Simple.

JimmyS
JimmyS
24 days ago
Reply to  Mack

Voting isn’t a right, has never been a right anywhere, ever, and calling it a right doesn’t make it thus. Governments have ALWAYS decided who votes, thus voting is, by definition, a privilege granted by government. It annoys me when ignoramuses form opinions without knowledge, and then thrust their ignorance into discussions, not even knowing enough to know how absurd their opinions are. The absolute right to self defense is inherent in the living human. The individual right to own, possess, and use weapons of war was enumerated in the founding documents of this Nation. When you understand the difference… Read more »

Beobear
Beobear
29 days ago

The big bugaboo in all this is that it’s a tiny number of people who do their “time” come out better than they went in. Prison doesn’t reform people it just trains them to be better bad guys. Then you have the light sentencing for violent crimes so that these felons are just as bad or worse people even after being released. If the system was such that somebody commits a crime, is convicted, does their time and are no longer a danger to society then, yes, by all means reinstate their gun rights but that simply isn’t reality. Here… Read more »

Pa John
Pa John
29 days ago

Look up “Jury Nullification” and consider it carefully for the next time you get notified that you are to serve on a jury. No kidding. https://duckduckgo.com/?q=jury+nullification&atb=v256-1&ia=web _______ Wikipedia: Jury nullification, jury equity, or a perverse verdict generally occurs when members of a criminal trial jury believe that a defendant is guilty, but choose to acquit the defendant anyway, because the jurors consider that the law itself is unjust, that the prosecutor has misapplied the law in the defendant’s case, or that the potential punishment for breaking the law is too harsh. ____ America’s time of testing appears to be coming,… Read more »

Russn8r
Russn8r
29 days ago
Reply to  Pa John

“It is not only (the juror’s) right, but his duty…to find the verdict according to his own best understanding, judgment, and conscience, even though in direct opposition to the direction of the court.” -John Adams “…it is usual for the jurors to decide the fact, and to refer the law arising on it to the decision of the judges. But this…lies with their discretion only. And if the question relate to any point of public liberty, or if it be one of those in which the judges may be suspected of bias, the jury undertake to decide both law and… Read more »

Russn8r
Russn8r
29 days ago
Reply to  Pa John

“Awa!ting for appr0val”: Would help much if otherwise loyal Chr!stian preachers would read American Rev0lutionary sermons debunking the pervasive subversive New Testament misrepresentation (e.g. Romans 13), claiming it prescribes Chr1stians to unconditionally OBEY all laws, decrees, rulers, magistrates & enforcers. Good start is Mayhew’s great 1750 sermon that paved the way for the Rev0lution. Excerpt: “We may very safely assert these two things in general, without undermining government: One, no civil rulers are to be obeyed when they enjoin things inconsistent with the commands of God. All such disobedience is lawful & glorious…disobedience to them is a duty, not a… Read more »

Bill
Bill
29 days ago

The juries decisions were asinine! These hoods were tried by a jury of their peers; gang-bangers with juvenile or bargained-down misdemeanor records who could then serve on jury.

Donttreadonme
Donttreadonme
29 days ago
Reply to  Bill

Take away who this guy was and look at the fact that someone defended themselves with a firearm against a larger group of known bad guys. Im all for steong self defense laws. But as I said in my other response, I dont think the jury cared as much about that as they do from keeping a minority out of prison, regardless of anything. Had races been different I doubt the outcome woud have been the same.

Donttreadonme
Donttreadonme
29 days ago

Im all for it, although I don’t think the jury did it for the reason we all would like to think they did it for.

swmft
swmft
29 days ago

It is not just that a RIGHT is taken when they do nothing to police and prosecutors that withhold evidence of innocence to win a conviction when the person could not have done the crime, There was a man on death row 17 years that police had his pay stub and bank receipt from New Jersey the day of the crime these were not given to defense or the judge but they were in the evidence box with his stuff when the police are just another gang every one has a right to defend themselves even a gang member

JSNMGC
JSNMGC
29 days ago
Reply to  swmft

I wonder if those police attempted to hide their assets before they committed those crimes?

Your example is a good reason why government should have less power.

People give government more power because, for some reason, they believe most government employees are honest, competent, and hard working.

Last edited 29 days ago by JSNMGC
Knute
Knute
29 days ago
Reply to  JSNMGC

I have to disagree. I don’t think the average sheeple really believes that most government employees are honest nor competent nor certainly not hard working…. but simply that they act as such because they have an inborn NEED to be subservient to whatever the authority of the moment happens to be. I think that most simply fear being ostracized from their flock if they do otherwise. Thus they complain endlessly about government… but then do whatever they are told by them.
Which is what makes them sheeple, rather than people.

JSNMGC
JSNMGC
29 days ago
Reply to  Knute

Things are changing.

Neanderthal75
Neanderthal75
29 days ago
Reply to  swmft

“Some police”.

Don’t be a jackanapes and use the widest brush possible to say all police because that’s a load of horse crap: cops are human beings; some are good, some are bad, some don’t have a clue.

One size does not fit all, hello?

Russn8r
Russn8r
29 days ago
Reply to  Neanderthal75

Don’t be a jackanapes and misrep what swmft said. He didn’t say “all”. Your clear attitude is that criticism of widespread (not total) abuse & corruption by cops & prosecutors with impunity, is per se anti-cop. You clearly don’t give a crap about the victims of corrupt cops & prosecutors.

Last edited 29 days ago by Russn8r
uncle dudley
uncle dudley
29 days ago

Since this case ended in a not guilty verdict for a felon using a firearm to defend himself, we will now see other felons who are accused using this as a precedent case in their defense, will it make it harder for a prosecutor to get a guilty verdict when a felon is caught with a firearm, only time will tell.

Tionico
Tionico
29 days ago
Reply to  uncle dudley

Maybe I missed it, but I do not recall seeing this man was charged with “felon in possession”, and that was certainly not addressed in the jury’s verdict. The man was, per Dean’s piece above, with FIRST degree murder. The bar to prove THAT is very high.. must be proven that the accused had the intent of killing the victim prior to the encounter. It ust also be proven that the actor had planned the details, means, place, etc, in advance. That is NOT the case here.. in fact, as this encounter opened up, the accused did not even have… Read more »

Stag
Stag
29 days ago
Reply to  uncle dudley

Good!

RetNav
RetNav
29 days ago

The main point is well made, Dean. Aside from that, obviously the judiciary and prosecutors are still not recognizing the violation of law and it’s effects, specifically the Possession of Weapons by a Felon charge. You want gun control? Prosecute the law as it is currently written!

Roland T. Gunner
Roland T. Gunner
29 days ago
Reply to  RetNav

Had the felon not posessed a weapon, he would have been unable to defend himself. Depriving him of his right to bear arms, as a free vitizen, no longer incarcerated, and considered to have psid his debt to society, is unconstitutional, immoral, and simply bad law. Loss of his rights is applied while he is incarcerated.

Tionico
Tionico
29 days ago

True dat. As one amongst is is well known and loved for saying:
“if a man cannot be trusted in society with a gun, why is he trusted in society without custodian? ” Once he is sprung out of the hoosegow, let him take up arms again. If he behaves rightly he’s done. If he behaves wrongly he’s done FOR. And should be locked up for a lot longer this time.

JimmyS
JimmyS
24 days ago

Under which Constitutional power does the government incarcerate “criminals?”

JSNMGC
JSNMGC
29 days ago
Reply to  RetNav

What happens when “the law” includes the registration of semiautomatic rifles – do you still want it to be enforced/prosecuted?

Tionico
Tionico
29 days ago
Reply to  JSNMGC

any “law” that is not conssitent with the US Constitution and all laws duly enacted in accordance thereof, is not law at all, is null, void, and of none effect.

SO any “law’ including the registraiton or firearms is not law, is null voind and of none effect, thus cannot be lafully enforced. But we all know they will try….. and will all but certainly be met with rather “unpleasant” response.

JSNMGC
JSNMGC
29 days ago
Reply to  Tionico

Fortunately, there is nothing to worry about.

There are only a few “bad apples” out there who would enforce such despicable laws. The odds of running into one of them are extremely low, and if you do, a “good apple” will no doubt be there to serve and protect you.

Neanderthal75, how did I do – was that better?

Mike the Limey
Mike the Limey
29 days ago

If convicted felons aren’t considered to be able to be trusted with a firearm, they shouldn’t be allowed back out into society.
An automatic, life long ban on the possession of firearms is a great injustice, especially towards those convicted of non violent crimes (admittedly not the case here).

Levelhead
Levelhead
29 days ago
Reply to  Mike the Limey

If not the case here what are you babbling about? These two will be back and hopefully a jury with some balls will put them away for good.

Roland T. Gunner
Roland T. Gunner
29 days ago
Reply to  Levelhead

How American of you to convict them of a crime they have not yet committed.

musicman44mag
musicman44mag
29 days ago

How about how UN American.

Tionico
Tionico
29 days ago
Reply to  musicman44mag

missed the sarc font, did we? He tends to use that one regularly.

Neanderthal75
Neanderthal75
29 days ago
Reply to  Levelhead

If they had been legally released from their first prison sentences, which means they had done their time as required, then they were free men once again. Someone can either be trusted to walk around freely as a full citizen, or they cannot be trusted. Should the latter case be the fact, then they should still be inside permanently. Felons who complete their prison sentences should have 100% of their full constitutional rights restored to them, this includes the right to keep and bear arms. Some folks get out of the life, and some folks stay in the life, regardless,… Read more »

Tionico
Tionico
29 days ago
Reply to  Levelhead

in my conty it is a felony to shoot a cat.. even a nuisance feral cat. 90% of this county is rural, so its not a matter of shooting near houses, etc. It is the act of shooting ANY cat. In many jurisdictioins if a man has been divorced, and has children, and is ordered to pay child support.. and if for WHATEVER reaason he is unable to pay the outrageous sum demanded of him, after he falls behind a certain number of months he is now charged with a felony and cannot possess arms. So his company folded because… Read more »

Grigori
Grigori
29 days ago
Reply to  Tionico

Tionico, great post and examples, even if they are disturbing, which is what makes them great. I have griped for years now, about how EVERYthing these days seems to carry a “felony” aspect. I seriously expect any day now, to read of some hapless soul who was charged with a “Felony Jaywalking” crime, created by power-mad legislators who love seeing peoples’ lives destroyed by their handiwork.

Grigori
Grigori
30 days ago

“Felons do not give up the right to self-defense. It is an inherent human right.”

^^^^ This! ^^^^

Another great and informative article by Dean!

Heed the Call-up
Heed the Call-up
29 days ago
Reply to  Grigori

That and it has only been since the 1938 FFA that felons have been disbarred the RKBA. Interestingly, it disproportionately affects blacks, another sign of the racial bias of “gun control”.

Also interesting how the Democratic party claims to be pro-equality, or now, pro-equity of outcome, but the effects of their laws always negatively impacts who they claim to be helping – we are supposed to ignore that and just listen to their message. I remain unconvinced as the results of their policies do not match their claimed goals.

Levelhead
Levelhead
29 days ago

Not the issue here. Two armed felons killed and wounded three unarmed men. If there is an issue here it is disparity of numbers. Three dirt bags against two dirt bags.

swmft
swmft
29 days ago
Reply to  Levelhead

guessing you were a flatfoot , and knocked a few heads in your day, assault and battery is a felony YOU are a felon; or dirt bag ,as you say. you were protected by your gang so how is that right?? I quit DEA because the crimes committed under the color of law were so outrageous and no one went to jail well the river cops but they attacked a dea sting setup

Neanderthal75
Neanderthal75
29 days ago
Reply to  Levelhead

Just because someone has chosen to be a dirtbag does not mean that such an individual does not have a right to remain alive and upright when challenged by other dirtbags, who may desire to plant the first dirt bag for whatever reason.

Bottom line: everyone who has done their time has a right to defend themselves and their lives.

What you are arguing for is a dictatorship where everyone deserves to die who is not 100% righteous: news flash, ain’t nobody fits that bill!

Tionico
Tionico
29 days ago
Reply to  Levelhead

no, read for accuracy. ONE armed felon who split the scene handing off his heater to his bro. So, it came down to one armed former felon agasint there unarmed thugs. Disparity of force in numbers would justify the use of letlah force, which is just what the jury found. Interestig thing is the former felon who was in possession of a gun (and handed it off tohis equally “disabled” brother, gut charged with felon in possession and that stuck. This trial never seems to have addressed that issue. Maybe because he did not carry the gun to the scene,… Read more »