ROBERT MOMAN IS one of the more interesting people to call Quincy home. He moved here from the Chicago suburbs a few years back and immediately started getting into trouble.
His troubles caught up with him Thursday, when he was sentenced to 20 years in prison for a crack cocaine conviction. Click here for the story.
His sentencing was unlike any other I’ve seen in a decade of covering crime and courts. I have never seen a guy admit he wasted the court’s time by going to trial, never heard a defendant say to police officers “you did a good job” on his case.
And for only the second time, a defendant addressed me during the hearing.
Moman was given a chance to speak before Judge Mark Drummond lowered the boom. Moman is a tall young man with a lot of personality — he was never inappropriate when in court and he liked to joke with the bailiffs. At a hearing in March he had an interesting exchange with one of the West Central Illinois Task Force agents who helped put him away.
Anyway, Moman apologized to his family, the court, the attorneys, his girlfriend, and five Quincy Police officers in the courtroom. Then he apologized to the residents of Quincy and looked right at me. “Mr. Newsman, please put my apology in the paper,” he said.
The only other guy I know to address me in court was the infamous Richard “Sincere” Carr, who accused me of making him out to be be a monster. Being convicted of raping a 14-year-old girl and pleading guilty to robbing a bank and escaping from the Adams County Jail while battering a corrections officer kind of speaks for itself, but I digress.
Moman said QPD officers “wanted the best for me.” Back in 2008, Moman was involved in the Clyde Jackson murder on North 12th. Authorities say Moman reportedly was the target that night but Jackson was shot in the head by mistake instead. Moman was repeatedly warned by officers he was being targetted and something bad could happen to him, but he simply shrugged it off.
He got a five-year sentence in 2008 for attempted arson in Quincy. A judge dismissed numerous ordinance violation and traffic tickets against him and said he might be better off living somewhere else when he got out of prison.
Moman didn’t listen.
Judge Drummond said it best: “I’ve heard what you say, but I’ve read what you have done.”