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Victims’ advocate avoids jail time for contempt

WOODSTOCK – Carolyn Mahoney has avoided a 90-day jail sentence by cutting a check for more than $75,000 to her ex-husband – who is serving a 20-year prison sentence for trying to kill her.

Billy J. Cox, a 70-year-old Bull Valley businessman, was convicted in November 2007 of attempted murder and aggravated domestic battery. He beat Mahoney, who then had the last name Cox and has since remarried, in the face with a blunt object and then locked her in a garage with cars running.

Mahoney has since become a vocal advocate for the rights of domestic violence victims and a prominent public speaker.

Judge Gerald M. Zopp found Mahoney in civil contempt of court and imposed the jail time – unless she paid back $75,852.76.

Cox’s attorney, Mark Gummerson, has said that under the terms of the divorce settlement, Mahoney was to transfer an IRA account in her name to Cox, but she failed to do so.

Mahoney’s attorney, Robert Hanlon, has called the contempt finding a further victimization of Mahoney and said that his client had nothing to do with the removal of any account assigned to her ex-husband.

In another court filing, Mahoney has alleged that while in custody at Dixon Correctional Center, Cox has sought out at least two inmates in a murder-for-hire plot with her as the intended target.

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