Quinn Grants Clemencies Ahead of Holiday - NBC Chicago
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Quinn Grants Clemencies Ahead of Holiday

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    FILE - In this Dec. 24, 2013 file photo, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn speaks during an interview with the Associated Press in Chicago. Quinn will will deliver his annual State of the State address to a joint session of the General Assembly Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014 at the state Capitol in Springfield, Ill.

    Gov. Pat Quinn has taken action on 311 clemency petitions, granting less than half for crimes that stretch back to the early 1970s.

    The Chicago Democrat announced the news on Wednesday afternoon.  He granted 126 and denied 185 petitions.

    In a statement, his office says those who were granted clemency recently underwent criminal background checks. A Prisoner Review Board list shows clemencies granted were for crimes including domestic battery, insurance fraud, theft and child abduction.

    Quinn says he's making "significant progress" on a backlog. Thousands of cases built up under his predecessor, now-imprisoned ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

    Since he took office in 2009, Quinn has considered 3,358 clemency petitions. Overall, he's granted 1,239 and denied 2,119 petitions.

    Those granted pardons are allowed to seek expungement of their convictions through the courts.

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