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Posted on in Felonies

IL defense lawyerIn the state of Illinois, there is no specific “grand theft auto” law. So when someone steals a car or other motor vehicle, it is included in Illinois’ general theft law. This means, if someone is caught in possession of a stolen vehicle, they will face felony charges and all the punishments that come with them.

Defining Vehicular Theft

As stated above, the act of stealing a motor vehicle falls under the Illinois Theft Statute which includes several incriminating acts:

  • Taking unauthorized control of another person’s property.
  • Using deception to take control of another person’s property.
  • Threatening the owner to take control of their property.
  • Knowingly taking property that has already been stolen from another person.

In the cases of vehicular theft, the automobile is the property that cannot be taken control of. The exception is if the owner gives permission for the alleged thief to borrow the vehicle for an agreed upon period of time.

Punishments for Vehicular Theft

Stealing a car will result in a felony theft charge. A conviction of this nature will result in fines and possibly even jail time depending on the value of the product stolen.

  • A Class 3 felony is given when the value range of the automobile stolen is $500-$10,000 and the punishment is up to five years in prison.
  • A Class 2 felony is given when the value range of the automobile stolen is $10,000-$100,000 and deception is used to take the car. If the car is a government-owned vehicle with a value less than $10,000, the alleged thief will be given this charge. The punishment is up to seven years in prison.
  • A Class 1 felony is given when the value range of a government-owned automobile is $10,000-$100,000. For general cars, this charge is given when the value range of the automobile is $100,000-$500,000. The action is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
  • A Class 1 non-probationary felony is given when the value range of the automobile stolen is $500,000-$1,000,000.
  • A Class X Felony is given when the value of a regular car stolen exceeds $1,000,000 and when the value of a government-owned car exceeds $100,000. The punishment for this charge is up to 30 years in prison.

Defending Against Vehicular Theft Charges

Mistakes can be made and the best way to defend against vehicular theft charges is to prove that the alleged thief is, in fact, the legal owner of the vehicle. If the alleged thief is not the owner, then they must prove that they had permission from the owner to take the car and return it at a certain time.

There are also times when a car is stolen by one person but then is sold to another person who does not know that the vehicle was stolen. That person would have to prove that they had no knowledge of the theft in order to avoid a felony charge.

Contact an Elgin, IL Vehicle Theft Defense Lawyer

Cases of theft are often more complicated than they may appear. In order to be as safe as possible, you will need an attorney to help build your case and examine all evidence so that you are not wrongfully punished. The lawyers of the Law Offices of Brian J. Mirandola are ready to help you through your case. To schedule a free consultation with a Kane County criminal defense attorney, call 847-488-0889.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K16-1

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/062500050K4-103.2.htm

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Posted on in Criminal Defense

Aurora, IL drug charges attorney

Here in the state of Illinois, misdemeanor charges can come with significant criminal punishments. While some people underestimate the potential impact of a misdemeanor when compared to a felony, the long-term ramifications of a conviction can include difficulty securing employment, housing, or loan opportunities. Legally speaking, a misdemeanor can result in jail time and significant fines. 

Below we will discuss what crimes could lead to a misdemeanor conviction, and what you should do if you have been charged.

Misdemeanor Crimes in Illinois

According to Illinois state law, there are a number of crimes that can ultimately result in a misdemeanor charge. Assault or disorderly conduct (examples of disorderly conduct include public intoxication or a violation of noise ordinances) constitute a Class C misdemeanor. This is the least severe of the three misdemeanors, but can still result in up to 30 days in jail, a two year probation period, and maximum fines of $1,500. 

Common examples of criminal offenses warranting a Class B misdemeanor include but are not limited to aggravated speeding (driving more than 25 miles per hour over the legal speed limit) and minor drug charges. In the event of a conviction, you could face as much as 60 days in jail. The third and most serious charge is a Class A misdemeanor. This includes DUI, burglary, and unlawful possession of a weapon. If you are convicted of a Class A misdemeanor, possible punishments include up to one year of incarceration and fines as high as $2,500. 

How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help 

After being charged with a misdemeanor, it is important to act quickly. A skilled criminal defense attorney may be able to have the case thrown out due to improper execution of arrest procedures. In the event of a conviction, you still have a number of options. According to Illinois state law, a large number of misdemeanor crimes are eligible for expungement or criminal sealing. It should be noted that in the event of a record seal, the misdemeanor can still be viewed on your criminal record by law enforcement, but it will make the criminal record inaccessible via background check or public record. 

Contact an Elgin, IL Criminal Defense Attorney

With well over a decade of experience in the state of Illinois, including as an assistant state’s attorney of the Kane County, Attorney Brian J. Mirandola is uniquely prepared to help you fight against a misdemeanor charge. Through careful examination of your case, he will develop a strategy to pursue dropped or reduced charges. To schedule a free consultation with an experienced Kane County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 847-488-0889. 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/073000050K5-4.5-55.htm

http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/forms/approved/expungement/ExpungementSealing_Instructions_Approved.pdf

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Posted on in DUI

DUI, Kane County DUI defense attorneyWhen a person is pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI), he or she has a few options. The first option is to be 100 percent cooperative and comply with every request the officer makes. Alternatively, the suspect could be polite and compliant with most of the officer’s requests, while respectfully refusing a breath test and other roadside sobriety tests. The third option is to be openly defiant and overtly refusing to comply with any of the officer’s requests. While the third option is better than outright aggression or fleeing—the remaining two options—such an attitude can lead to additional criminal consequences in certain situations.

Adding to a Driver’s Problems

In early October of this year, a 39-year-old man was pulled over in Plainfield Township by an officer of the Illinois State Police. The suspect—a Joliet Township High School District employee—refused to comply with requests for a breathalyzer and would not even get out of his vehicle when ordered to by the officer. It is unclear whether he submitted to field sobriety tests, but the pattern of events included in the police and court records suggests that he most likely did not.

Initial reports indicate that the man was arrested and charged with one count of DUI and one count of obstructing a peace officer in carrying out official duties. The obstruction charge was a misdemeanor while the DUI was a felony charge, as it represented a potential third DUI offense for the driver since 2002. Subsequent reports say that the obstruction charge was dropped, but the man now faces additional charges for aggravated speeding more than 35 miles per hour over the speed limit and improper traffic lane use. The aggravated speeding charge is a Class A misdemeanor. The man was freed on $10,000 bond.

Failure to Appear

While the charges are still pending, the man filed a petition to have his license suspension dismissed. Illinois law provides for the statutory summary suspension of the license of a person who fails or refuses a chemical tests for blood alcohol content incident to arrest. The man was due in court a couple of weeks ago to contest his suspension, but court records show that he and his attorney did not appear. His petition was subsequently dismissed.

Seek Help With Your Case

As this case clearly demonstrates, any situation involving DUI charges can become extremely complicated very quickly. If you or a loved one has been arrested, contact an experienced DUI defense attorney in Elgin. Call 847-488-0889 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation at The The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola today.

Sources:

https://patch.com/illinois/joliet/alberto-filipponi-also-charged-obstructing-illinois-state-police-during-latest-dui

http://www.wjol.com/joliet-township-high-school-district-curriculum-director-charged-dui/

http://www.theherald-news.com/2017/10/25/joliet-d-204-administrator-charged-with-dui-fails-to-avoid-license-suspension/a6nx9wu/

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victim, Kane County criminal defense lawyerWhether you have somehow been involved or associated with the sale or transport of illegal drugs, are a victim of domestic violence, or have the unfortunate experience of being exposed to a child abduction case, there are countless resources for Illinois crime victims. When you are victim of a crime, however, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and unsure of where to turn for help. In the most unfortunate situations, you could even find yourself being charged in connection with the crime, making your life even more difficult.

In certain areas of the law, it is easy to caught up in a world of trouble, despite being a victim or innocent bystander, including:

Illegal Drugs

One of the most prevalent crime battles in Illinois is monitoring the growth and sale of illegal drugs, such as marijuana. State police are constantly on guard to protect residents and enforce laws that prevent the cultivation and distributon of this and other drugs. Should you find yourself in the presence of an illegal drug, you can do the following to protect yourself from prosecution and help assist police:

  • Do not attempt to take samples for evidence;
  • Do not leave any potential signs of your presence in or around the area;
  • Do not linger or return to the area; and
  • Notify law enforcement right away with any and all available details.

Child Crimes

Child crimes such as abduction are not just an Illinois problem; they are a nationwide concern, and any child can be victimized. Parents, teachers, and caregivers can do a number of things to help prevent these crimes, such as preparing children to protect their own safety using various techniques. Role-playing is a great way to teach children how to be discerning with suspicious or potentially dangerous predators.

If you or someone you know experiences a child-related crime, contact authorities immediately and try to provide as many details as possible, such as the suspicious person’s vehicle information and a description of their appearance, as well as the child’s most recent whereabouts. Your participation can also help you avoid potential prosecution for obstructing justice.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence crimes are some of the most common yet most difficult crimes to address as they are emotionally turbulent for everyone involved. Illinois State Police report that a woman in the U.S. is beaten every 15 seconds. If you are a victim of an abuser and would like to leave and get help, filing an order of protection is one of the first steps you can take to protect your safety.

The police can accompany you to remove your belongings from the home and help you file the police report. Some important items to pack when you leave include keys, wallet, medical records, clean clothes, and sentimental items. Most importantly, consult an experienced criminal law attorney who can help you protect your rights. Remember that answering violence with violence could result in charges against you as well.

No matter what the situation, if you have been charged in connection with a crime you did not commit, you need an experienced Elgin criminal defense attorney on your side. Call the The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola today at 847-488-0889 for a free consultation.

Sources:

http://www.isp.state.il.us/crime/domesticviol.cfm

http://www.isp.state.il.us/crime/childprotacts.cfm
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Posted on in Criminal Defense

Illinois criminal defense attorney, Illinois defense lawyer, felony charges, Toward the end of his tenure as governor, former Governor Pat Quinn signed into law a new measure designed to limit the rights of felons to collect on pension plans. The law gives the Attorney General the authority to bring a lawsuit in order to prevent public pensions from paying out to people convicted of felonies in certain circumstances. The change in the law arose after the Illinois Supreme Court handed down a decision holding that the Attorney General's office lacked that authority, despite the fact that the Illinois Pension Code already included provisions related to felons collecting public pensions.

The New Law

The new law is more of a procedural change than an actual substantive one. The Illinois Pension Code has had a provision related to felony convictions for decades. The law states that employees in public pension plans may not collect their pension benefits if they are convicted of a felony related to their public service. However, the law lacked an enforcement mechanism, meaning that it was up to the pension administrators to make sure the rule was properly adhered to.

The new law changes that. It gives the Office of the Attorney General the right to bring a civil suit enjoining the payments of public pension benefits to people who were convicted of those sorts of felonies. However, the Attorney General's office does not have that authority yet. The law does not go into effect until June 1st of this year. The goal of the law is to improve the enforcement of the felony conviction rule by providing more power to the Attorney General after the Supreme Court declared that it was outside of the Attorney General's authority to bring these suits.

What Prompted the Change

The change arose out of the case of former Police Commander Jon Burge. In 2010, Burge was convicted of lying in order to cover up the torture of suspects by the police. The matter of his pension went to a police pension board to determine if he was still eligible to collect it. Some members of the board felt that his convictions did not relate closely enough to his public work since they were for perjury during a civil suit that came after he had already retired. The board eventually split evenly on the matter, and Burge kept his pension. The Attorney General then tried to sue to prevent its being paid out, but the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that the Attorney General did not have that authority. This new law overwrites that decision.

Although fines and jail time are some of the most common penalties for felony convictions, the effects can be much more far-reaching. If you are facing criminal charges, contact an experienced Kane County criminal defense attorney today.

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