This past Thursday, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled unanimously in People v. Aguilar that the Illinois law that banned carry outside the home was illegal under the Second Amendment. Yesterday, this ruling caused Cook County Circuit Judge Ellen Mandeltort to reverse herself and drop charges against Deafalla Haddad. Mr. Haddad had been charged with the unlawful use of a weapon after he was found in possession of a handgun during a routine traffic stop.
Cook County Circuit Judge Ellen Mandeltort last week denied Deafalla Haddad’s request to drop the charges.
But the Supreme Court ruled Thursday that part of the state’s gun law was unconstitutional and advised prosecutors to drop charges in certain cases. That ruling fell in step with a federal court decision earlier this year declaring that the state’s gun laws violated the U.S. Constitution.
At Monday’s hearing, defense attorney Matt Fakhoury asked Mandeltort to reconsider the request in light of the Supreme Court decision. She agreed and found the case against Haddad violated his Second Amendment rights.
“This court finds that the charges (against Haddad) are unconstitutional,” Mandeltort said from the bench.
Fakhoury said it was the first case in Cook County to be dropped after last week’s ruling and that there could be more challenges filed.
“Basically the federal courts said one thing and the state court said another,” Fakhoury said. “But the state court is now following the federal ruling.”
Mr. Haddad, an IT professional and married father of three, obtained his FOID card and then a .45 caliber handgun after he was attacked while stopped at stop sign. Mr. Haddad also started carrying his pistol despite the general prohibition against carry by Illinois state law. This is what led to his arrest for unlawful use of a weapon.
His defense attorney, Matt Fakhoury, discusses the case in the video at this link.