Brown v. Illinois State PoliceAnnotate this Case
The Illinois State Police (ISP) revoked Brown’s Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card due to Brown's 2001 California conviction of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence (MCDV). On his application, Brown had answered “no” to the question of whether he had ever been convicted of domestic battery or a substantially similar offense. A domestic violence conviction precludes possession of firearms under federal law, 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9).
The Illinois Supreme Court reinstated an order granting Brown’s petition and ordering ISP to issue Brown a FOID card. Under section 10(c) of the FOID Card Act, a circuit court may grant relief to a petitioner whose FOID card has been revoked if the petitioner has not been convicted of a forcible felony under the laws of any jurisdiction within 20 years of the application or at least 20 years have passed since the end of any period of imprisonment imposed in relation to that conviction; the circumstances regarding a criminal conviction, the applicant’s criminal history, and his reputation are such that the applicant will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety; granting relief would not be contrary to the public interest; and granting relief would not be contrary to federal law.
Brown satisfied the federal law test for the “civil rights restored” exception because he lost his right to possess firearms under California law and those rights were subsequently automatically restored by virtue of California law 10 years after his conviction.