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Elgin criminal defense lawyerOne of the most violent and dangerous types of crime is arson, or starting fires intentionally. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which defines arson as any “willful or malicious burning or attempting to burn with or without intent to defraud…”, states that there were nearly 33,400 incidents of arson that took place in the United States in 2019. Arson can often lead to serious injuries or even death, which is why it is punished accordingly in Illinois. If you have been charged with arson, you should know the penalties for the crime and any related charges that you may be facing.

What is Arson in Illinois?

Arson is committed when a person uses fire or explosives and:

  • Damages real or personal property valued at $150 or more; or

  • Intends to defraud an insurer and damages real or personal property worth $150 or more

For the most part, arson is charged as a Class 2 felony, which carries a potential sentence of between three and seven years in prison. If arson is committed in a person’s residence or a place of worship, it will be charged as a Class 1 felony, which carries a potential sentence of between four and 15 years in prison. All felony charges carry up to $25,000 in fines.

Elevated Charges: Aggravated Arson

In many cases, an arson charge can be elevated to aggravated arson, which is a more serious charge. Aggravated arson occurs when a person damages a structure with fire or explosives and:

  • They know or should have reasonably known that there were people inside;

  • Anyone suffers from great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement; or

  • A fireman, policeman, or correctional officer is injured in the act. 

In any case, aggravated arson is classified as a Class X felony. This means that a person convicted of aggravated arson can face between six and 30 years in prison, depending on the circumstances surrounding the case. 

Contact an Elgin, IL Arson Defense Attorney Today

In many cases, an arson charge is extremely serious and can result in many years in prison. In some cases, arson charges can even be elevated to aggravated arson, which is a Class X felony -- the most serious of felony charges. If you have been accused of committing arson, you should speak with our knowledgeable Kane County arson defense lawyers today. At the Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola, we can evaluate the evidence, find weaknesses in the prosecution's case, and build a robust defense against the charges. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 847-488-0889.

 

Sources:

https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2019/crime-in-the-u.s.-2019/topic-pages/arson

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=072000050HArt%2E+20&ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=63800000&SeqEnd=64600000

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073000050HCh%2E+V%2E+Art%2E+4%2E5&ActID=1999&ChapterID=55&SeqStart=28100000&SeqEnd=30600000

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elgin defense lawyerIn everyday conversation, we often use the terms “theft,” “robbery,” and/or “burglary” in place of one another. However, in the legal world, these three terms all have very distinct meanings and carry different sentences if a person were to be convicted of those crimes. A burglary charge is a serious offense in Illinois and can result in felony charges and potential imprisonment. If you have been accused of burglary in Illinois, having a skilled criminal defense attorney on your side can be immensely helpful. 

Defining Burglary and Residential Burglary in Illinois

When a crime is referred to as “burglary,” the alleged crime took place in a building, such as a warehouse. In the state of Illinois, a charge exists specifically for burglaries that take place inside of a person’s home. The crime of residential burglary occurs when a person knowingly and without authority enters or remains inside of a person’s home with the intent to commit a felony or theft.  In other words, you do not actually have to commit a crime or steal anything -- you can be convicted of residential burglary if the prosecution can prove that you unlawfully entered the home and had the intention of committing a crime or theft. A residential burglary offense can also apply to a person who falsely represents themselves as a person from a utility, construction, or telecommunications company, or member of the government, with the intent of committing residential burglary.

Penalties for Burglary and Residential Burglary

Typically, a general burglary case results in a Class 3 felony charge, bringing a potential two- to a five-year prison sentence. If the building was damaged in the process, the charge would elevate to a Class 2 felony, which has the potential of between three and seven years in prison. If the burglary took place in a daycare center or place of worship, then the charge can be elevated to a Class 1 felony, carrying a potential sentence of four to 15 years in prison.

Discuss Your Case With a Kane County Burglary Defense Attorney

If you have been accused of any type of theft or burglary crime, you need help from an experienced Elgin, IL burglary defense lawyer. At the Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola, we will look over all of the facts surrounding your case to help you build the best defense for your situation. To schedule a free consultation to get started working on your case, call our office today at 847-488-0889.

 

Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073000050HCh%2E+V%2E+Art%2E+4%2E5&ActID=1999&ChapterID=55&SeqStart=28100000&SeqEnd=30600000

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=072000050HArt%2E+19&ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=63000000&SeqEnd=63800000

 

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Kane County felony defense attorneyOf all the different types of criminal charges that a person can face, some of the most serious involve the accusation that a person caused someone else’s death. While intentionally killing someone else can lead to charges of first-degree or second-degree murder, a person may also face felony charges if they are accused of accidentally causing someone’s death. Depending on the circumstances, the offenses of involuntary manslaughter or reckless homicide may apply. Those who are facing these types of charges will want to understand how Illinois law applies to their situation and the potential penalties they could face if they are convicted.

Involuntary Manslaughter and Reckless Homicide Charges

A person may be charged with involuntary manslaughter if they unintentionally kill someone else without a lawful justification. Typically, involuntary manslaughter charges will apply if a person acted recklessly in a way that was likely to cause great bodily harm or death to someone else. In most cases, involuntary manslaughter is charged as a Class 3 felony, and a conviction can result in a prison sentence of two to five years. A person who is convicted of a felony may also be required to pay a fine of up to $25,000.

There are a few situations where more serious felony charges will apply for an involuntary manslaughter case. If the alleged victim was a peace officer, a person may be charged with a Class 2 felony, and a conviction will result in a prison sentence of three to seven years. Class 2 felony charges will also apply if the victim was a member of the alleged offender’s family or household, and in these cases, a conviction can result in a prison sentence of 3 to 14 years.

If a person causes someone else’s death because of the reckless operation of a motor vehicle, watercraft, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle, they may be charged with reckless homicide. This could include situations where a person allegedly caused a car accident because they violated traffic laws or committed DUI. Reckless homicide is a Class 3 felony.

Reckless homicide charges may be increased to a Class 2 felony in certain situations, and a conviction may result in an extended prison sentence. If a person allegedly committed reckless homicide in a school zone or construction zone, they may face a prison sentence of 3 to 14 years, and if two or more people were killed, a conviction can result in a prison sentence of 6 to 28 years. The same penalties will apply if a person allegedly killed someone through a violation of Scott’s Law, which requires drivers to slow down and move over when approaching an emergency vehicle that is stopped on the side of the road.

Contact Our Kane County Manslaughter Defense Lawyer

If you have been accused of accidentally killing someone else, you could be facing serious felony charges, and a conviction could lead to a sentence of several years in prison, as well as large fines. At The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola, we can help you determine the best defense strategy against these charges, and we will fight to protect your rights during your case and minimize the potential penalties that you may face. Contact our Aurora reckless homicide defense attorney today at 847-488-0889 to arrange a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K9-3

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-907

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073000050HCh%2E+V%2E+Art%2E+4%2E5&ActID=1999&ChapterID=55&SeqStart=27300000&SeqEnd=29800000

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IL defense lawyerWhile there are many similarities between a misdemeanor and a felony, the single most central commonality being the fact that they are both categories of criminal offenses in the Illinois justice system with which you can be charged, there are major contrasts that can mean the difference between not much time in jail and low fines to major prison time and substantial fines. Here is a closer look at the differences between felonies and misdemeanors in Illinois.

Definitions and Examples

Ultimately, the primary difference between a misdemeanor and a felony is the severity of the crime. The Illinois criminal justice system views certain crimes as less serious than other crimes, which is why they are separated into these two categories and then delineated into different classes with different penalties (shown below). The following is true of misdemeanors and felonies in Illinois:

Misdemeanors—These are not as serious as felonies, but they can still cause damage to your life and reputation, including affecting your opportunities for employment, housing, finances, and education. Fortunately, with the right lawyer, some misdemeanors can be expunged. Examples of misdemeanors include:

  • Assault and battery
  • Theft
  • DUIs and other drinking-related charges
  • Drug possession and other drug-related charges
  • Sex crimes

Felonies—These are more serious than misdemeanors; in fact, they are the most serious of criminal classifications. This means the penalties are steep. It also means that many felonies can never be expunged from your record as they can with misdemeanors; in other words, depending on the felony, you might be branded a felon for life as having committed these types of crimes in Illinois. Examples of felonies include:

  • Burglary
  • Forgery
  • Stealing cars
  • More severe drug charges, sex crimes, or DUI

Classes and Associated Penalties

Depending on what you are being charged with, there are different classes of penalties for misdemeanors and felonies. Here is a summary of each:

Misdemeanors:

  • Class C Misdemeanors lead to penalties up to the following:
  • Fines of $1,500
  • 30 days in jail
  • Class B Misdemeanors carry with them these penalties:
  • Fines up to $1,500
  • Up to 30 days in jail
  • The consequences of Class A Misdemeanors include:
  • Fines up to $2,500
  • Up to a year in jail

 Felonies:

  • Class 4 Felonies lead to the following penalties:
  • Fines up to $25,000
  • Up to three years in prison
  • Class 3 Felonies carry with them the following consequences:
  • Fines up to $25,000
  • Up to five years in prison
  • Class 2 Felonies could result in the following punishments:
  • Fines up to $25,000
  • Up to seven years in prison
  • Class 1 Felonies could lead to these penalties:
  • Fines up to $25,000
  • Up to 15 years in prison

Other than the consequences for homicide, Class X Felonies are the most severe in penalties, requiring the following punishments to be served:

  • Fines up to $25,000
  • Up to 30 years in prison

Contact a Kane County Felony Defense Lawyer

If you are facing felony or misdemeanor charges, call an Aurora IL misdemeanor defense attorney at 847-488-0889 for a free consultation. The Law Offices of Brian J. Mirandola will give you a fighting chance in the Illinois criminal justice system because Brian has experience as a prosecutor and knows how to anticipate the prosecution’s arguments to better prepare for your case and convince the judge and jury to deliver a verdict in your favor.

 

Sources:

http://www.icjia.state.il.us/assets/pdf/ResearchReports/Policies_and_Procedures_of_the_Illinois_Criminal_Justice_System_Aug2012.pdf

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=073000050K5-4.5-55

https://www.isba.org/sites/default/files/Media%20Law%20Handbook%20Chapter%2005%20-%20Crimes%20and%20Punishment.pdf

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IL defense lawyerSince there is no federal mandate for masks or social distancing to help combat the coronavirus, states are taking their own approach. Many, including Illinois, have opted for a mask mandate that requires people to wear cloth masks in public. Despite this mandate, police have no real way to enforce such mandates. The burden of enforcing these rules has fallen primarily on retail workers, who have the power to deny service and remove customers from a business if they refuse to comply.

As a result, many individuals around the country have assaulted such workers. Some states have not taken any steps to provide any additional protections for essential workers, but Governor Pritzker recently signed a bill into law allowing prosecutors to charge those who assault workers for upholding mask bans with a felony.

Assaults on Workers and Felony Charges in Illinois

To be more specific, assaults on workers who are enforcing mask or social distancing policies can be punished with aggravated battery felony charges. Before this new law, ordinary battery charges were only considered misdemeanors. Such an offense was punishable by up to a year in prison and fines up to $2,500. By elevating the unique case of coronavirus-related assaults to a felony, punishments become steeper. A felony can be punished by up to five years in prison and as much as ten years if the defendant has a criminal history. Also, these prison sentences can be paired with fines of up to $25,000.

Claiming Self-Defense to Fight Assault Charges

A common strategy for defendants and their attorneys is to argue that the defendant acted out of self-defense. However, to successfully win a case by claiming self-defense, any action the defendant took must have been reasonable. For example, if someone threatens a defendant and the defendant reacts with an action far more severe than the original threat, a self-defense argument may not be plausible.

Contact an Elgin, IL Defense Lawyer

Assault is a criminal offense that carries strong penalties. If you are charged with assaulting a worker for upholding medical policies, you should work closely with an attorney who has a wide breadth of experience defending clients from criminal charges in Illinois. To work with an Elgin, IL criminal defense attorney, schedule a free consultation with The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola by calling 847-488-0889.

 

Source:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/08/11/illinois-coronavirus-assaulting-worker-enforcing-face-masks-felony/3342856001/

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