EDWARDSVILLE — The state attorney general has filed Madison County State's Attorney's petition to appeal the Oduwole case to the Illinois Supreme Court.
Olutosin Oduwole, 27, was convicted in 2011 of attempting to make a terrorist threat while a student at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.
Prosecutors had argued that a piece of paper found in his car in 2007 stated that a murderous rampage would occur if he wasn't paid $50,000. He was awaiting delivery of four legally purchased handguns at the time.
Oduwole argued that the note was only rap lyrics, and it did include several lines about a girl as well as the demand for money. The paper was found jammed under the center console of his car and could not have been seen from outside the car, according to the testimony of the officer who found it after it was towed.
Last month, the 5th District Appellate Court in Mount Vernon overturned Oduwole's conviction, ruling that the evidence did not show he actively tried to convey a threat. He was released from prison on March 20, having served 15 months of his five-year sentence.
Gibbons' petition argues that the Illinois Supreme Court must properly define what constitutes terroristic threats, and states that the appellate court overstepped its bounds regarding the sufficiency of the evidence.
"We presented a case that showed that the actions of this defendant represented a threat to the community and a jury agreed with us," Gibbons said. "I am hopeful that the Illinois Supreme Court will agree to hear this important case and restore justice for our community by reinstating the jury's verdict."
Before he could appeal to the Supreme Court, Gibbons needed approval from Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, who filed his appeal Wednesday.
"Lisa Madigan has always been a leader in the fight for justice in Illinois, and we are fortunate to have her on our side," Gibbons said.
The Illinois Supreme Court will next decide whether to review the case. It is now in the hands of the Appellate Prosecutors Office, in consultation with Gibbons' office.
Oduwole was expelled from SIUE and remains barred from the campus. His attorney, Jeff Urdangen, told the Associated Press that they would answer the filing from the state and "urge the Supreme Court to decline to accept this case."
Contact reporter Elizabeth Donald at email@example.com or 239-2507.