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Category Archives: Criminal Law

Wheaton Criminal Defense LawyerCriminal records are public information. If someone is charged with a crime, anyone can view the arrest record with a few clicks of the mouse button. Not only does a criminal record harm an individual's personal reputation, it can also prevent that person from securing adequate housing and employment.

If you have a criminal record, you may be interested in getting your record expunged. Read on to learn about expungement and record sealing in Illinois.

Do I Have a Criminal Record if I Was Never Convicted?

In the United States, people are considered innocent until proven guilty in court. Consequently, many people assume that merely being arrested or charged with a crime does not result in a criminal record. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Being arrested is recorded and anyone can view the record of the arrest.

Can I Clear My Name Through Expungement?

Expungement destroys the record of an arrest. Once a record is expunged, it does not show up on a background check and cannot be viewed by the general public.

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DuPage County Criminal Defense AttorneyEveryone should be aware of their rights – whether they are currently involved in the criminal justice system or not. The United States Constitution and state-level legislation protect our right to avoid self-incrimination, be free from unreasonable searches of our property, and much more.

If you or a loved one were arrested for a criminal offense, it is even more crucial that you fully understand the rights and responsibilities of criminal defendants. Part of this understanding requires myths and rumors about the police to be debunked.  

Myth: The Police Must Identify Themselves as Law Enforcement Officers

Television shows and movies have helped perpetuate many myths and rumors about police officers. Perhaps the most enduring of these myths is the legend that police must identify themselves as law enforcement officers. You may have heard that police must answer “yes” if you ask them, “Are you a cop?”

This is completely untrue. Police do not have to identify themselves as police officers. Undercover officers pretending to be regular citizens are regularly used in sting operations and undercover drug busts.

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Wheaton Criminal Defense LawyerDid you know that the human brain does not finish developing until a person is in their mid to late 20s? The prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain that regulates impulse control and problem-solving, is one of the last parts of the brain to reach full development. It is no surprise that teenagers and young people sometimes make rash, irresponsible decisions.

If your child was charged with theft, possession of a fake ID, assault, drunk driving, or another criminal offense, do not lose hope. The state of Illinois recognizes that many juvenile offenders are good people who made a poor decision. The state has instituted various diversion programs that may keep juvenile offenders out of detention facilities and give them a chance to turn their lives around.

Diversion Programs Give Youth a Second Chance

Fortunately, Illinois prioritizes rehabilitation over punishment when it comes to juvenile offenders. The state offers several diversion programs that allow juvenile offenders get the help they need and avoid strict criminal penalties. Completing certain diversion programs may result in the dismissal or reduction of criminal charges. Other programs are used to help juvenile offenders avoid further criminal charges. For example, the llinois Second Chance program provides services to offenders under the age of 17 ½ who suffer from addiction or mental health problems who are being released from correctional facilities. The program provides aftercare young people need to reduce the chances of recidivism.

Components of Illinois Diversion Programs

Juvenile diversion programs vary based on the age of the offender, the nature of the offense, and the jurisdiction. However, all programs have the same goal of helping a young person turn his or her life around. Diversion programs often require the juvenile to participate in:

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Wheaton Violent Crimes LawyerWhile battery is typically only a misdemeanor in Illinois, aggravated battery is a felony. Battery is defined as causing physical harm to or making physical contact with a person in a way that is insulting or provoking. A single slap or spitting on someone may be considered a simple (misdemeanor) battery. When aggravated battery is charged, it is because there were circumstances present that make the attack much more serious. 

Depending on the circumstances, aggravated battery could be charged as anything between a Class 3 felony and a Class X felony - which could carry a life sentence. If you are facing an aggravated battery charge, it is important that you secure excellent legal representation as soon as possible - ideally, before arraignment. 

What Circumstances Elevate Simple Battery to Aggravated Battery?

Illinois state law sets out a list of aggravating factors that can cause a battery to be charged as a felony. If you have been charged with aggravated battery, it is probably because the state believes that you battered someone and one of these circumstances was present: 

  • Serious harm - A battery that severely injures the victim aggravates the charge. If the victim suffers great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement, you could face felony charges. 

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DuPage County Criminal Defense LawyerThere is a very good reason that every defendant is considered innocent until proven guilty - some of them are indeed genuinely innocent of the crime they are accused of. Getting arrested and charged is going to be unpleasant no matter what, but winding up in handcuffs over something you did not do can be downright traumatic. Getting accused of something you flat-out did not do is a horrible feeling. Actually facing criminal prosecution for a crime you are not guilty of is terrifying. 

If you have found yourself in this situation, it is important that you secure strong legal representation. Do not count on the situation to sort itself out. People can and do get wrongfully convicted and imprisoned. 

What Causes Innocent People to Get Charged With Crimes?

Mistaken arrests can happen for a variety of reasons. A strong defense is necessary, even if you did not commit the crime. Reasons innocent people can be charged with crimes include: 

  • Misidentification - Crime victims may identify the wrong person as the perpetrator. You may simply happen to resemble an offender, or be wearing a similar outfit. This is particularly likely to happen if you are arrested near the crime scene and soon after the crime. While the techniques police may use to help a victim identify the perpetrator using photographs have improved, misidentification is still possible. 

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Abraham Lincoln A lawyer’s time and advice are his stock and trade. -Abraham Lincoln
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Davi Law Group, LLC handles criminal law matters for clients in Chicago and throughout the western suburbs including DuPage County, Will County, Kane County, Kendall County and Cook County and the cities of Aurora, Bloomingdale, Bolingbrook, Carol Stream, Darien, Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Geneva, Glen Ellyn, Hinsdale, Joliet, Kendall County, Lisle, Lombard, Naperville, Oak Park, Oak Brook, Oswego, Park Ridge, Roselle, St. Charles, Villa Park, Warrenville, Wheaton, Winfield, Woodridge and Yorkville.

 

 

 

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