WNBA star Maya Moore and her husband Jonathan Irons on Tuesday revealed they gave birth to a baby boy in February, PEOPLE reported. Moore, 33, married Irons in 2020 after she helped free him from prison in a wrongful conviction case.
Moore also shared the news in an Instagram post. “Marrying Jonathan was one of the happiest days of my life!” the two-time Olympic gold medalist shared before also writing, “Delivering JJ was one of the proudest days of my life!”
“Witnessing Jonathan be a Father…Priceless,” she added.
Moore took a sabbatical from basketball in 2019 to help overturn Irons’ conviction, Face2Face Africa reported. Irons was serving a 50-year prison sentence for burglary and assault when he met Moore. The 42-year-old was convicted in 1998.
“I met Jonathan when I was 18. I was about to be a freshman at [the University of Connecticut] and my godparents and my great uncle introduced me to him and his story, his case,” Moore told Good Morning America in a different interview.
“He had been wrongfully convicted, he had been in prison over a decade at that point, so I was just interested in learning,” Moore added.
Irons was 16 when he was sentenced to 50 years in prison on burglary and assault charges for attacking a homeowner with a gun in St. Louis. During the incident, the homeowner was reportedly shot in the head.
Despite the unavailability of witnesses, fingerprints, footprints, DNA, or blood evidence to link Irons to the scene of the crime, he was still found guilty by an all-white jury after the homeowner identified him as the suspect. He was also tried as an adult albeit a juvenile.
Irons’ conviction was ultimately overturned in 2020 after a judge determined there were a number of issues with how authorities went about the case. Moore and Irons announced their marriage two months after his release, PEOPLE reported.
“I got to know him and over the last 13 years we have just developed a friendship and [then] entered this huge battle to get him home and over time it was pretty clear what the Lord was doing in our hearts. Now we’re sitting here today, starting a whole new chapter together,” Moore told the ABC morning show.
After his conviction was overturned, Irons also told The New York Times that Moore saved his life. “I would not have this chance if not for her and her wonderful family. She saved my life and I cannot say it better than that,” Irons said at the time.
“It feels like I can just breathe, like the weight of the world is off of me, like I have the chance to live.”