CHICAGO - ISIS wannabe Mohammed Hamzah Khan of Bolingbrook was sentenced to 40 months in prison on Friday for trying to join Islamic State militants.
Kahn will likely be freed by next August but from that point on, the government will be allowed to keep an eye on him for the next 20 years for court supervision.
He is subject to surprise searches by law enforcement including unannounced checks on his phone and computer and also mental health treatment and counseling for violent extremist behavior.
Khan, was 19 years old when federal agents arrested him at O'Hare International Airport, preparing to begin a trip with his younger brother and sister that would put them all in Syria with ISIS militants.
His datebook was filled with ISIS drawings and writings. Kahn pleaded guilty and on Friday he was already in custody for the last two years. Judge John Tharp handed him a three and a half year sentence. With credit for time served that means he'll be out by next fall to attend college.
"Today he can being getting on with the rest of his life," Thomas Durkin, Khan's attorney said.
"We thank God that this judgement come out today and we are glad about it. We have been waiting for almost two years," Shafi Khan, Khan's father said.
Judge Tharp used Friday's sentencing to offer up a civics lesson telling Khan that here in America "instead of a public beheading" he had been afforded a public trial.
After Khan was arrested in 2014 his mother made headlines accusing ISIS of social media trolling for potential American jihadists then brainwashing them.
"The venom spewed by these groups and the violence committed by them find no support in the Quran and are completely at odds with our Islamic faith... Leave our children alone," said Zarine Khan, mother of the suspect.
On Friday she stood by as Khan's father and attorney did the talking.
"What we don't seem to understand is that you can't fight wars in the criminal justice system and that's what we're doing...What do you think you're going to learn warehoused with a bunch of criminals other than criminality, radicalism? Our prisons are a joke," Durkin said.
Khan's brother and sister were never charged in the case. Khan is among more than 75 people who have been arrested in the U.S. on ISIS terrorism charges since 2014. And like khan, many have pleaded guilty. They are cases that raise troublesome questions for the courts about how to handle people who were tangled up with ISIS. The case resolved on Friday also provided some answers.
Khan is expected to go to the College of DuPage in the fall if everything works out.