CHICAGO — A man who won a $4 million lawsuit against the city and Chicago police officers who allegedly framed him in a 2009 murder case is facing felony charges after cops said they found a ghost gun in his car during a traffic stop.
Officers pulled Ramsey Qurash over in the 4300 block of North Elston on Tuesday evening, prosecutors said during his bail hearing Wednesday. He initially refused police commands to roll down his window and presented cops with an expired driver’s license, Assistant State’s Attorney Sarah Dale-Schmidt said during the hearing.
After police asked him to step out of the vehicle, they found a ghost gun with an extended magazine and a laser sight attachment in the center console, according to Dale-Schmidt. She said Qurash has three previous felony convictions, most recently for possession of a controlled substance and cannabis in 2014.
He’s now charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.
During Wednesday’s hearing, Steven Richards, Qurash’s private defense attorney, revealed that Qurash had won a substantial judgment for wrongful prosecution and said Qurash is now a Bitcoin investor.
Judge Charles Beach required Qurash to pay a $1,000 bail deposit because he found the ghost gun and extended magazine to be “aggravating circumstances.”
In 2009, Chicago police officers arrested Qurash, then known as Anthony Kuri, for a shooting that left one man dead and another injured in the 4600 block of North Central Avenue in Jefferson Park.
He spent almost three years in the maximum security wing of Cook County Jail, only to be acquitted in a bench trial. Another man, who confessed to the crime, was convicted during the same proceeding.
Kuri sued the city and the police, winning just over $4 million after a federal jury trial. The city appealed and lost.
In short, a federal appeals court wrote that two Chicago police detectives swore that two men who survived the shooting pegged Kuri as the shooter. But those men testified in both the criminal and civil trials that they did not identify Kury even after the detectives instructed them to, the appeals court wrote. Additionally, a bicycle that the gunman left at the shooting scene bore no fingerprint or DNA evidence linking it to Kuri.
The district court judge later issued another judgment, awarding Kuri $1,550,000 in attorney’s fees and $20,000 in costs.