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Category Archives: Criminal Law

stop and frisk, Cook County criminal defense attorneysA stop and frisk occurs when a policer officer has a reasonable suspicion that you are going to commit or have already committed a crime. Therefore, the officer stops and searches you. Various states across the nation have stop and frisk policies. However, these policies have come under scrutiny as opponents argue that they target people of color disproportionately and are ineffective at curbing violent crime. 

Why Do Police Officers Conduct Stop and Frisk Searches?

The short answer is is that a stop and frisk is conducted in order to gather evidence for a crime in which the police have a reasonable suspicion has occurred or is in the process of occurring. The theory law enforcement relies on is that there are circumstances in which they would ordinarily need to obtain a warrant to conduct a search. However, due to the nature of the crime they are investigating, doing so would substantially impede law enforcement's ability to gather the evidence before it is destroyed or before a member of the public is injured.

Why Are Stop and Frisk Searches Controversial? 

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DuPage County  gun possession charges attorneys, gun possession chargesIllinois has a history of having strict gun possession laws. For example, Illinois was the last state in the country to allow for concealed weapon carrying, which you must have a permit to do.

If you are charged with a gun crime, you can expect that a court and jury will not take such allegations lightly. Retaining a defense attorney is the first step you can take to safeguard your constitutional rights as a defendant. 

Requirements for Gun Owners

In order to buy and possess a gun in Illinois, at the minimum you must have a Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card. This card does not allow you to carry concealed. It is a prerequisite to obtaining a concealed weapons permit.

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DuPage County criminal defense attorney, reckless homicide

While the concept of negligence is commonly used within the context of civil law, Illinois law has provisions that encompass negligent behavior with criminal consequences and sentences.

In DuPage County, an individual can be charged criminally and sued civilly for the same conduct. Both Illinois statutes for involuntary manslaughter and reckless homicide involve the unintentional killing of another through a negligent or reckless act. However, involuntary manslaughter and reckless homicide are two charges with an important distinction.

Courts across the country in different jurisdictions make a distinction between whether the act was negligent or reckless to determine whether the prosecutor is going to pursue a case using the involuntary manslaughter statute, or a reckless homicide statute.

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DuPage County criminal defense attorneys, right to remain silent, Miranda rightsYou have probably seen a crime drama television show where a police officer reads a suspect his or her Miranda rights.

These rights were established in U.S. Supreme Court case Miranda v. Arizona, which was decided in 1966. In that case, the court ruled that anyone suspected of a crime must be informed of the following:

“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?”

The Miranda warning covers two rights: the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney.

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DuPage County theft charges attorneys, felony theftThe Illinois legislature is considering two bills that would raise the dollar amount that triggers felony theft charges. The proposals would raise the felony minimum from items valued at $500 to $2,000 or $2,500, depending on the bill.

Supporters of the Bills

Supporters of the bill argue that the $500 threshold amount is too low. For example, stealing an iPhone could be considered a felony theft charge. The threshold amount should be raised to keep up with the rising cost of consumer goods.

Supporters point out that 29 states set the felony theft minimum at least twice as high. For example, Wisconsin and Texas law provides that theft of an item valued below $2,500 is a misdemeanor.

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