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Can a PA juvenile felony record keep you from getting an IL FOID card?

Quincy, IL |

A family member was found guilty of a felony (murder) at age 14 in PA--as a juvenile. Years later in IL he applied for an FOID card; he received a letter stating he had lied on his application about being a felon. He spoke to the State Police in Springfield, IL and explained his record was sealed at age 18. Two weeks later he received his FOID card.
Recently he was sent to jail for waving a handgun at his estranged wife. The state police came to the jail, telling him he was subject to arrest for lying on his FOID application. What's going on? Can he really be arrested when the state police had apparently looked into the matter 10 years ago?

To my knowledge the state police have not yet charged him with any new offense. The FOID card was issued at least 10 years ago, so I don't know what sort of proof they could possibly have at this point. I also don't know if my nephew could obtain phone records from that long ago to prove that he did, indeed, call them on this matter. The judge who sentenced him to jail for 200 days (on a misdemeanor reckless conduct charge--2 felony charges were dropped) cited his juvenile record as proof that there was a history of violence. My nephew had served in the US Navy and worked at Lambert Field in St. Louis as an airline mechanic. His juvenile record was questioned in each instance, so how 'sealed' is it?

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Attorney answers 2


Juvenile records are sealed and not generally available to the public. If in fact the murder was completely handled through juvenile court that alone cannot preclude the Illinois State Police from issuing the FOID. If the police are claiming he lied on the application I would be interested to see what proof they have. Since the record was sealed it will be impossible for them to attempt to use the previous juvenile prosecution as evidence for any new felony charge. The police can always arrest a person for anything - whether its right to wrong. When they do it wrongfully it may result in civil liability against them for deprivation of one's civil rights. Did he actually get charged wtih any new offense?


Sealed records are available to the State Police. Sealed means the records are not publicly available.
Lying on a FOID application is an offense that must be done "knowingly," which is a difficult standard for the State. If your relative believed his juvenile history didn't matter and they did not have it in the record there may be some wiggle room.
Additionally, there is a disconnect between Illinois law and that of other states. In Illinois very few murder charges are handled in juvenile court. It may not occur to an Illinois State's Attorney this is even possible.

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