The pardons that Governor Quinn granted were of no surprise. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, of the pardoned offenses, “twenty-five involved theft. Sixteen involved drugs. Eight offenses included some kind of violence…” The violence cases are usually going to be some form of misdemeanor battery, often the domestic variety. People who have been arrested for theft, drugs, and/or domestic battery are the most common potential clients that call me (not including quasi-criminal traffic offenses such as DUI, driving on suspended/revoked, or operating an uninsured motor vehicle). So I would expect that Governor Quinn likely sees more petitions for theft, drugs, or battery than anything else.
One interesting note, both the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune incorrectly state that Governor Quinn is expunging the petitioners’ criminal records. Governor Quinn doesn’t actually expunge their criminal records; he merely grants them the authorization to expunge. Someone that receives a pardon will still have to go through the normal expungement process by filing a separate petition with the court. Ultimately it is up to the judge to grant the actual expungement.